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70,000 miles on a 




Copyright, 1920, by 

George M. Battey, Jr. 

(All Eight* Reserved) 

70,000 Miles 



The Reid Boat in the World War 

By George M. Battey, jr. 

with Photographs mostly by the Author 
Skttchct ij> 






War Zone Course of the Reid 

July 21, 1917: Left Charleston for war 

July 23, 1917: Arrived St. Georges, Ber- 

July 26, 1917: Left St. George's, Bermuda. 

July 31, 1917: Arrived Ponta Delgada, 

Oct. 7, 1917: Left Ponta Delgada, Azores. 

Oct. 13, 1917: Arrived Queenstown, Ire- 

Oct. 13, 1917: Left Queenstown, Ireland. 

Oct. 14, 1917: Arrived Cardiff, Wales. 

Oct. 15, 1917: Left Cardiff, Wales. 

Oct. 16, 1917: Arrived Queenstown, Ire- 

Oct. 21, 1917: Left Queenstown, Ireland. 

Oct. 22, 1917: Arrived new base, Brest, 

Dec. 11, 1918: Left Brest, France, for 
home. ; , : 

Dec. 14, 1918: Arrived Ponta Delgada, 

Dec. 19, 1918: Left Ponta Delgada, 

Dec. 28, 1918: Arrived Grassy Bay, Ber- 

Dec. 29, 1918: Left Grassy Bay, Bermuda. 

Dec. 31, 1918: Arrived Charleston, S. C. 

Completing more than 70,000 miles at sea. 

a rr en n w i 

Table of Contents 


Chapter Page 
Historical Sketch 7 

I Off for the War Zone . . . .11 

II Nine Weeks in the Azores . . . 35 

III The Base at Brest 75 

IV Attack on a Submarine . . 1 09 
V Sinking of the Covington . . 1 39 

"Barnacles" from the Log . . 1 76 

"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 227 

"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 265 
Standing by the Wing Locker . .301 
Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" 

Letters 358 

Tables of Convoy Service . . . 399 

With the Sea-Going Poets . . . 417 

The Gobs' Dictionary .... 445 

Thirteen sections of pictures, sixteen pages to each 
section (total, 208) alternating with each section 
of sixteen pages of text, beginning with Page 1 7. 
Six maps illustrating various features of the cruise. 







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Historical Sketch 


HE Destroyer Reid was built by the Bath Iron 
Works Co., of Bath, Maine, as a sister ship of 
the Destroyer Flusser, whose experiences in 
the World War just fought were largely the 
same as her own. She was commissioned Dec. 3, 
1 909, and at that time was regarded as the last word 
in the construction of vessels of that type. On her 
trial trip she is said to have attained a speed of ap- 
proximately 31 knots, and at the end of 70,000 
miles of steaming in the war she could still make 26 
or 27. Her length is 293 feet, 10 J/2 inches; her 
beam 26 feet, 4 Yi inches; her draft 9 feet, 6 inches; 
her displacement 700 tons; her coaling capacity 303 
tons ; and her fresh water capacity 3 7 tons. At 1 5 
knots her radius is 2,000 miles, and at 20 knots 
1,700. Her engines are of the Parson type, 
5 -turbine installation; her boilers are of the Normand 
type and number four. She has three torpedo 
tubes and her torpedoes are the Whitehead type. 
She carried five three-inch guns early in the war, 
but the installation of depth charges made it neces- 
sary as a precautionary measure to remove No. 4 
gun from aft. In its place early in the fall of 1918, 
a Y-gun was installed for the further use of depth 
charges, and the 3 -inch gun turned into storage. 
Her war complement was 99 men and 7 officers, 
but toward the end of the war she carried 1 2 1 men. 
The Reid's number is 2 1 . She lies at this writing 
at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, where she has been 
put out of commission with her sister vessel the 
Flusser and their companion coal-burning destroy- 
ers of the old First Division, — the Preston, the Smith 
and the Lamson. Many were the predictions at 
the outset that the Reid and these destroyers would 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

never survive a winter in the Bay of Biscay; that 
Uncle Sam would swap them for the Azores Islands 
and throw the Philippines in "to boot"; but they 
survived in a manner that reflected credit upon their 
crews and upon their builders. In fact, it was a 
source of considerable satisfaction to inhabitants of 
the group to ponder the wisdom of old-fashioned 
destroyer building as they contemplated the exper- 
iences of several of our latest type oil-burners which 
were turned out last year in sixty days or so and 
which put into Philadelphia after a few stiff blows 
with rivets loose, stanchions behaving queerly and 
steel plates buckled up. The spirit of their crews 
is expressed in the following sentence : 

"If you new-fangled oil-burners can't stand the 
pace in the strenuous times that are ahead, just let us 
off the junk pile and we will show you how it's 

It is customary to name battleships after states, 
cruisers and light craft after cities, and destroyers 
after men who have distinguished themselves by con- 
spicuous service at sea; and it was appropriate that 
the Reid should have been named for a sailor who 
explored the main in the days of sails and calms 
and cutlasses, when wireless and seniority were 
practically unknown; for a sailor who invented a 
helpful telegraph system and designed the present 
American flag. Thus Capt. Samuel C. Reid be- 
came the Reid's "patron saint", and from Leslie's 
Illustrated Weekly of June 5, 1858 (copy of which 
is framed and hanging in the wardroom of the Reid 
today) the following historical sketch is summarized 
and presented as a matter of interest to the crew 
and the general public. It is also worthy of note 
that one of Captain Reid's grandsons busied him- 
self during the war just closed in the work of the 


Historical Sketch 

Navy League and made a tour of states in interest 
of naval recruiting. Captain Reid won his spurs by 
harrying the British at the Island of Fayal, Azores 
I lands. This island, by the way, the Reid visited 
August 4, 1 9 1 7, at the port of Horta, and it was at 
Horta that the American Airship NC-4 landed on 
May 17, 1919, on the remarkable trans-oceanic 
aerial flight to Europe in which Commander John H. 
Towers, of Rome, Ga., flying the NC-3 as flag air- 
ship of the group, was lost at sea, but finally made 
port at Porta Delgada. Here is Leslie's account: 

At 8 o'clock on the night of September 26, 1814, the 
Privateer Brig General Armstrong (Captain Samuel C. Reid, 
U. S. N.) was lying in the neutral port of Fayal, Island of 
Fayal, Azores Islands. Captain Reid was entertaining the 
American Consul aboard when three British warships — the 
Ships-of-the-Line Plantagenet (74 guns), the Frigate Rota 
(44 guns) and the Carnation (18 guns), all under Ad- 
miral Loyd, of the English Navy — put in. Captain Reid 
sent the American Consul ashore and prepared for an at- 
tack. Four small boats left the enemy ships and on their 
failure to halt when challenged, Captain Reid fired on them, 
killing several men. The British fired at the same time, 
killing the General Armstrong's first lieutenant and wound- 
ing one other. 

The boats were dispersed and an hour later fourteen more 
were put out, several of them carrying as many as 50 Brit- 
ish sailors. On their failure to halt when challenged again, 
Captain Reid gave them another round of grape and can- 
nister from "Long Tom", the ship's 48-pounder, and as 
the trusty weapon was re-loaded and fired, several of the 
boats crumpled up and sank, and their occupants were 
thrown dead or dying into the water. There were so many 
boats, however, that Captain Reid saw a hand-to-hand en- 
counter was coming, so he sent some mess cooks and deck 
hands down into the hold to break out the cutlasses. In the 
meantime, the crew of the General Armstrong were pepper- 
ing their antagonists with small gun fire, but the enemy 
soon swarmed over the vessel's side and gave battle at close 
range. Captain Reid was left-handed and in his left he 
brandished a cutlass, while the cabin boy handed him pis- 
tols to fire with his right. A lieutenant joined battle with 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Captain Reid back aft, and the combat for some time waxed 
hot. The cutlasses of the combatants struck fire and the 
fight might have resulted in a draw had not the lieutenant 
stumbled on a hatch, which gave the captain an opportunity 
to send him reeling over the side. Captain Reid had not 
used his pistols at all. 

The few survivors retreated, and Admiral Loyd signalled 
the Civil Governor to force the General Armstrong from 
under the protection of the cliffs, but at the same time the 
American Consul wrote a note to the Governor imploring 
him to stand firm. At dawn the next day the British at- 
tacked by steaming in. Captain Reid shot away the main- 
mast of one of the vessels, but seeing the odds were against 
him, beached his ship and blew her up. The British burn- 
ed her and sent word to the Governor to surrender Captain 
Reid and his men, who had taken refuge in a convent, or the 
ships would shell the city. The Portuguese paid no attention 
and Admiral Loyd lifted anchor and went to New Orleans, 
where he was due to help capture that city. 

It developed that Admiral Loyd was delayed ten days by 
the battle in the Azores and was unable to help in the com- 
bined land and naval attack on the Louisiana city. This 
delay saved the day, because General Andrew Jackson was 
able to overcome the British before their naval reinforce- 
ments arrived. The battle of Fayal was the last of the War 
of 1812 on the seas and did much to revive hopes at home 
and to discourage the British. It is recorded by the his- 
torians as one of the most daring achievements of the war. 
The Americans lost two in killed and five wounded. Ad- 
miral Loyd lost 560 men in killed. 

Note — The original Destroyer Reid having been put 
out of commission, its successor by the same name was 
launched Nov. 6, 1919, at Boston, Mass. It is an 
oil burner of 1,200 tons and can make 35 knots. 


Chapter I. 


HHE boatswain's mate was rigging in a small 
boat, setting it securely in the boat cradles, 
aided by several nimble seamen. He 
paused as the job was done, and leaning 
over the bow with an air of firm conviction, whis- 
pered to his star line-whipper: 

"We're goin' across!" 

The sea-going master of salt and spray, veteran 
of many a sharp blow along the coast and unwilling 
convert to back-channel inaction and quietude, 
looked up with a jerk of his head and the sponta- 
neous exclamation: 

"The hell you say! Quit your kiddin*, 'Shorty' !" 

"All right now; that's straight." 

"Shorty" did not wait to explain that his dope 
was "pure g^c^^vine" or "reliable scuttle butt." 
He whisked himself off to the forecastle as fast as 
his hoop-like legs would carry him, mounted the 
ladder at the break of the forecastle with a Simian- 
like agility not to be surpassed in the jungle itself, 
and caught the Captain's sharp order as it came 
caroming from the bridge via the Officer of the 

"Haul in your lines!" 

"Shorty" repeated the order aftward, and it was 
passed by seaman to seaman from forecastle to 
fantail. There was a hurried shuffling of feet 
on the steel deck as the deck force loosed the lines 
from the dock and pulled them in hand over hand. 
For a brief moment the star seaman who had re- 
ceived "Shorty's" message paused at the seamen s 
compartment hatch to shout vociferously below: 


7C,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

''We're goin' across! Snap out of it, all you rum- 

"Tell it to Sweeney!" shot back a doubting 
machinist's mate. 

The Captain stood calmly surveying the scene, 
overlooking a bit of dumb work here and there as 
green material tried to control the heavy lines, then 
as the task was completed, he yelled: 

"Shove off!" 

The engines began to turn and the propellers to 
churn up a mass of foamy suds, sending us in an 
even glide forward, with hardly a ripple as our 
razor-edge bow slit the murky water of the Cooper 
River. That was the way the Destroyer Reid was 
built, — to slip along like a gar, with a minimum of 
resistance from the water, to make all the more 
speed. So with the Destroyer Preston, accompany- 
ing her under similar orders. Same with the Smith 
and the Lamson, which had sallv i >J( a day or two 
previously from Charleston, and likewise the Flusser, 
the remaining member of the First Division of coal- 
burning destroyers, which was being left behind to 
escort the mother ship, the Panther. 

Near the mouth of the river, just before hitting 
salt water and the swell, the Officer of the Deck 
clambered down from the bridge and spoke to 

"Pass the word that we're on our way across," 
said he; "St. George's, Bermuda, the first stop." 

"Aye, aye, sir!" acquiesced "Shorty," and 
passed it. 

A shout went up from every throat that heard 
this welcome announcement, and the more exuber- 
ant gobs jumped up and down, hugged each other 
like playful bears and executed little dances, pigeon- 


Off for the War Zone 

wing and buck style, around the deck. At last we 
were to get into the game of hunting submarines, 
and not a man of our hundred in dungarees would 
have swapped his job with a king. 

Along we skimmed at 20 knots, receiving the tail 
of a wave now and then on the outboard edge of 
the deck. Soon we began to rock in Father Nep- 
tune's cradle of the deep, the eyes of civilian sailors 
turned green, then pale, and finally lost color alto- 
gether, but the deck and the coils of rope and the 
ammunition boxes held everybody up. The penalty 
of sea-faring was not to daunt us, for we were on 
our way across! 

Silly young flying fish, acting like candle-flies, 
hurled themselves at us and met a sad end at the 
bases of the smoke stacks, where they were gathered 
up by old salts and fried to a turn. A couple of 
days of this, with a lookout stationed in the crow's 
nest 40 feet above the deck and others hovering in 
corners, broken with a night slashing through the 
phosphorescent waters of the Gulf Stream, and we 
stumbled upon Beautiful Bermuda. 

Ah! what paradisal wonders were held up 
to our gaze as we leaped at this splendid geological 
specimen! Larger and larger the hills grew, per- 
fectly outlined against the mid-summer sky crammed 
full of cumulus clouds resembling the fleece of 
heavenly sheep, but this was not enough. Around 
to port we curved, shifting the scenery at will as in 
a cinematograph, and always with a lapse of a few 
minutes getting newer and more startling effects. 
Soon we could follow the slender strips of land as 
they tapered off from the hill bases down to the 
pure coral of the bays. These strips seemed to 
come together from opposite directions like dove- 
tailing and to forbid the intrusion of craft such as 



Off for the War Zone 

ours, yet closer up we made out spaces between 
them which constituted the channels. A black speck 
appeared at the entrance to the city of St. George's, 
until 1815 capital of the Islands. It came creeping 
toward us, looming up pudgily as a well-fed spider 
faring forth to greet a guest, and the effect of fairy- 
land was dispelled further when a rasping British 
voice bellowed through a megaphone, "I'm going 
to board you!" This gentleman showed us how to 
get into the harbor without sticking on a sandbar or 
running afoul of coral reefs, and we next beheld a 
little white city crouching in the embrace of tumble- 
down hills. St. George's, the guide books said, was 
founded in 1 6 1 2', two years after the death there of 
Admiral Sir George Somers, for whom it was 
named. Built after the Spanish plan, it had retained 
its narrow streets and low buildings. Here it was 
that two ships set sail in 1610 with supplies for the 
starving British colony at Jamestown, Virginia, and 
it was here that powder was obtained which caused 
the British evacuation of Boston. Galley poets and 
others who had been singing the praises of the sea 
on the way over now turned their attention to the 
land, while the rest of the crew piled into the small 
boats for a trip ashore. There was no special inter- 
est for the majority of the men in the fact that Will 
Shakespeare got his idea of Prospero's Cave in The 
Tempest from nearby; King William IV of England 
and Sir Thomas Moore, the Irish poet, lived there; 
that such writers as Mark Twain, Kipling and Wil- 
liam Dean Howells spent considerable time recuper- 
ating in the islands, and that the blockade running 
headquarters of the Confederate States of America 
beginning in 1861 was located on the hill where St. 
George's leading hotel now stands. 

Bicycle riding, the smooth shell roads, the lone 
gin-mill, the semi-tropical shrubbery and fruits, and 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

the caves where Annette Kellerman dived for the 
movies, however, attracted our intensest interest. 
One got the impression of orderly government and 
righteous respect for it, of neighborly, industrious, 
satisfied citizens who never worried or hurried. The 
chief of police declared there hadn't been a homicide 
thereabouts for 40 years, he seldom arrested any- 
body for an offense beyond drunkenness and theft, 
and nothing much remained for policemen to do but 
play checkers and whittle white pine and talk nice 
things of King George. His jail, asserted the chief, 
was built of sandstone which any sailorman, gold 
brick salesman or millionaire profiteer could escape 
with the aid of a pocket knife. The main offense of 
the American gobs, continued the chief, was to 
straggle in after dusk from the caves and hills, their 
bicycles bearing no lanterns, thus endangering the 
precious lives of pedestrians. Hamilton, the present 
capital, was located 12 miles away, and was visited 
only by sailors who could pedal there and back, with 
a stop-over for ice-cream sodas and bananas and 
post cards, in the rather limited time of three or 
four hours. 

After a swimming party in the bay had been en- 
joyed, with no losses at the hands (or fins) of 
sharks, and after native colored citizens had stacked 
on a deck load of coal, we bade farewell to Beautiful 
Bermuda and pursued a bee-line toward the Azores. 
We had painted our ports black on the inside and 
covered our single compartment lights with sox or 
shades, with no lights on deck, so the submarines 
could not see us far at night, and thus we steamed 
along at 1 8 knots. Some estimated the distance at 
nearly 2000 miles, others said 1500. The nights 
were pleasant and the sea generally smooth, so that 
little groups of gobs gathered on deck to sleep, a 
few in the lee of smokestacks, one or two on huge 


"We're going across!" declared "Shorty." The glad 
news was passed quickly as soon as it came officially 
from the bridge, and the happy sailormen danced with 

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The Reid with three smoke-stacks removed for over- 
hauling, in July, 1917. Astern are the Worden, Lamson 
and Flusser, and to port of the Reid the Preston. 

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On our arrival in July, 1917, we found Bermuda prac- 
tically deserted by tourists, and few steamers running. 
Submarines were* just beginning to operate near tbe 

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Notice the pretty white canvas canopy protecting the 
engineroom hatch. A similar arrangement screened the 
quarter deck, before the storms ripped it off. 


A sea-cook of scholarly attainments who won his 
spurs (or heels) in the Battle of Santiago. In fighting 
trim lie referred to mess cooks as "automatic hoobs." 

Rolando Viveiros, poet, ship chandler and man of af- 
fairs, and his assistant, "John," who supplied American 
vessels at Ponta Delgada with the necessities ot life dur- 
ing the war. 

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Delgada at daylight, July 4, 1917, and drove the U-boat 

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Old Azorean couple who escaped death by sleeping in 
another room, and their dwelling struck by submarine 

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Off for the War Zone 

rope coils beneath the torpedo tubes aft, pillow life 
preservers tucked under their heads; others in the 
small boats, canvas pulled over their legs, and al- 
ways a lookout on the after deck house whose 
snores could be heard above the mechanical hissing 
and sputtering of the engine room and the chugging 
of the propellers. 

A circulator broke down on July 28, 1917, and 
steering aft by hand was resorted to. Hand steering 
brought back to old time sailors the days of man- 
power before machine power had advanced so far; 
it made us feel like we were pushing her along, so to 
speak. On July 30 we ran into playful schools of 
porpoises making twenty knots, and raced with 
them. At dusk a lookout sighted an object that 
appeared to be a submarine conning tower and 
periscope. All hands went to general quarters when 
the alarm bell sounded, and the gun crews made 
ready to bang away. For some reason the order to 
fire the 3-inch rifles was not given, and the responsi- 
bility of saving us was put on a couple of tars at the 
port machine gun. "Fire!" yelled our executive 
officer when we had dashed within range. The men 
at the machine gun tugged away to make the thing 
shoot, but it refused. "Damn it!" shrieked Ballard, 
seaman known far and wide for his steady sea legs; 
"The thing has jammed!" "Fire!" repeated the 
executive officer; and other officers, nervous over 
the rapid approach of the object, echoed, "Fire — 
hell — fire!" The gun still refused to function and 
as we turned a broadside to the supposed submar- 
ine, a lookout fell off the bridge and a chief petty 
officer moaned, "God, we're gone!" It was only 
an old target left by some passing ship, however, 
and we let off steam by shooting at porpoises when 
the gun got to going well. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Next morning, bright and early, July 31 (Tues- 
day), to be exact, we made out a dark mass ahead 
which we thought at first was a bank of clouds near 
the horizon. This dark mass soon began to take 
shape and we recognized it as Pico Island of the 
Azores group, the highest peak of which is reputed 
to be 7460 feet high; distance estimated by an an- 
cient mariner manning wheel, 52 miles. We let Pico 
pass on our port side and headed straight for St. 
Michael's Island, largest of the group, whose won- 
derful mountains were sighted at 2 P. M., 65 miles 
away. At 4 :45 P. M. we anchored at Ponta Delgada, 
capital of St. Michael's and largest city in the archi- 
pelago, with 45 tons of coal aboard and a lot of 
anxiety to get ashore, which was satisfied from 7 P. 
M. to midnight. Ponta Delgada was to be our base 
from which to escort ships and to hunt for sub- 
marines, covering a period of nine pleasant weeks. 






HE Azores Islands, little known to laymen 
in America, are situated in the area of the 
Atlantic Ocean between Lat. 37 N., Long. 
25 W. and Lat. 39 N., Long. 28 W., approx- 
imately 830 miles west of Lisbon, Portugal, to 
which country they belong, and approximately 2,500 
miles northeast of Charleston, and 2,228 miles east 
of New York. In the archipelago are nine islands, — 
San Miguel (St. Michael's), Santa Maria (St. 
Mary's), San Jorge (St. George's), Terceira, Flores, 
Pico, Fayal, Corvo and Graciosa. They were dis- 
covered between 1432 (St. Mary's) and 1452 
(Flores) by navigators from Portugal encouraged 
financially and otherwise by the Infante Don Hen- 
rique. The name Azores is derived from the woid 
"azor," meaning hawk, given them by the discov- 
erers on finding many hawks (or kites) in the in- 
terior. Less commonly the group are known as the 
Western Islands. 

Marine volcanic action caused the islands to rise 
up from the ocean and on cooling to assume approxi- 
mately their present form. There are still evidences 
of volcanic eruptions, being crater cups filled with 
water, making beautiful lakes, at Sete Cidades 
(Seven Cities), St. Michael's Island, and also the 
geographical phenomena at Furnas, same island, 
which furnishes hot water boiling up geyser-like 
within a few feet of bubbling cold water. Most of 
the material used in buildings, breakwaters and 
public roads is a dark slag which is very plentiful. 
Mineral waters, according to geologists, also point 
to the original volcanic upheaval. 

The climate is temperate and even, winters and 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

summers being equally delightful; the water runs 
pure out of the mountains and is brought regularly 
to the coast. Sanitary conditions are good, making 
fevers and other contagious diseases practically un- 
known. The Island of Pico offers the only snow, 
then solely on the tip of Mt. Pico and in winter. 
Agriculture is the principal industry, but gradually 
labor-saving devices are finding their way to the 
group, and a tremendous development may be ex- 
pected, with a heavy flow of tourist trade, when 
normal conditions are restored. There are extensive 
vineyards which produce the most luscious grapes in 
all Europe, Southern France not excepted, and the 
chief by-product is wine, which is likewise unsur- 
passed for table and personal uses. Fruits of deli- 
cious flavor rule throughout the group, mainly seed- 
less oranges, pineapples of largest size, and bananas, 
which, though smaller than the average, are none 
the less palatable. The women turn out laces and 
handiwork that are known all over the world. The 
inhabitants are of the Latin race and Portuguese is 
the language generally spoken, yet there are num- 
erous natives of Spain who retain their own speech 
and Flemish who speak French, and many of the 
Azoreans formerly members of the colony near 
Boston have returned with a good command of 
English. Mosquitoes are seldom seen or heard. 

When the Portuguese navigators discovered the 
islands, birds were the only vertebrates living there- 
on. The birds are numerous and varicolored : the 
blackcap, the canary, the wagtail, the goldfinch and 
many others whose beautiful songs delight the visi- 
tors from crack of day till shadowy dusk in every 
bush and tree. The kite, the hoot owl and the 
screech owl make up a carnivorous group, and there 
are numerous birds of the seagull family which fly 
about the harbors and nest in the cliffs. The quail is 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

also found in increasing numbers. It is smaller than 
the game bird of the United States and England, 
but the flesh is white, sweet and tender. 

The Portuguese are among the best fishermen in 
the world, as they used to be among the most noted 
mariners. Many of the inhabitants earn a livelihood 
fishing, and fish is the chief meat food of the in- 
habitants. Salmon-trout, grouper, smelts, sardines, 
mackerel and mullet are caught in large numbers; 
shrimp, crabs and lobsters are also abundant. 

The principal products are corn, wheat, potatoes, 
beans, sugar beets, cauliflower, and cabbage. Figs, 
pears, peaches and apricots are grown in limited 
quantity, as are tea and coffee. Two Chinese tea 
experts were employed in 1873 to raise tea, and 
they established a product which has found great 
favor in Lisbon and in Porto, scene of the attempt 
in 1919 to overthrow the Portuguese Republic. 
Dairy products are an important item of trade. 

Many old vineyards were damaged years ago by 
blight, then the American Isabella grape was intro- 
duced, and it is doing well. In peace times the an- 
nual output of wine from this grape was 1,210,000 
gallons. Oranges were exported in great numbers 
up to 1859, when 261,700 boxes were sent to Eng- 
land. Owing to plague, the output in recent peace 
times was about 40,000 boxes. The pineapples are 
particularly juicy and sweet, and are raised in hot- 
houses which contain 200 to 2,000 plants each. 
London and Hamburg took 1,500,000 pineapples 
in 191 0, London paying six to eight shillings ($ 1 .44 
to $1.92) for the most luscious specimens. 

Cantaloupes grow to a weight of four pounds and 
cost 3 cents per pound. A small watermelon is 
grown, and the price is about the same. 

The Azores (as well as the Madeira group to the 

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Nine Weeks in the Azores 

southeast) are considered a part of Portugal and 
have the same judicial, legislative and executive 
plan. There are three administrative districts, a 
civil governor at the head of each: the Ponta Del- 
gada District, named after the city, is made up of 
St. Michael's and St. Mary's Islands; the Angra do 
Heroismo District, named after the city, is composed 
of Terceira, San Jorge and Graciosa Islands; the 
Horta District, called after the city in Fayal, com- 
prises the remaining four islands — Fayal, Corvo, 
Pico and Flores. The Ponta Delgada District elects 
three delegates to the Portuguese Parliament at Lis- 
bon, and the other districts two each. The Angra 
and Ponta Delgada Districts enjoy local government. 
The population is shifting, but is estimated to be 
about 300,000. Ponta Delgada (city) has about 
30,000 and St. Michael's Island approximately 1 50,- 

St. Michael's is the largest of the islands, being 
37 miles long and 8 or 9 broad, and from the stand- 
point of trade it is the most important. It was dis- 
covered in 1439 by Gonzalo Velho Cabral, the Por- 
tuguese navigator, and the first immigrants arrived 
in 1 443. Pico da Vara, the highest mountain point, 
is about 5,000 feet in altitude. The chief cities are 
Ponta Delgada, Villa Franca, Ribeira Grande and 
Povoacao, while Sete Cidades and Furnas in the 
interior are perhaps of greater interest to tourists. 
St. Michael's offers a splendid example of man in 
the contest with nature and against fate, with man 
never giving up. Blight or commercial circum- 
stances cut off at various times production of cereals, 
indigo, the pastel plant, oranges, bananas and flax; 
and lastly, through the war just fought, an export 
trade estimated at $1,000,000 a year in pineapples, 
mostly with England, was reduced to nearly noth- 
ing. Inhabitants of St. Michael's have always been 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

patriotic and in the latter part of the sixteenth cen- 
tury contributed much to the fight of the Portuguese 
rulers to overthrow their rivals from Spain. In the 
war to down the Germans, it is needless to say, they 
fought valiantly. 

Santa Maria was landed upon Feb. 18, 1493, by 
Christopher Columbus on his return from the dis- 
covery of America, the story having it that his crew 
prayed for land in a severe storm and swore if they 
reached it they would give up suitable thanks. This 
they did in semi-nude condition at a little church 
which is supposed to be standing today at Anjos. 
The island is eleven miles long and five broad, with 
7,000 inhabitants. Pottery, wines and laces are the 
chief exports. 

Graciosa Island is one of the flattest in the archi- 
pelago, and is noted for the beauty of the Furno do 
Enxofre (Cave of Sulphur). Fouque, the distin- 
guished French chemist, mentions this cave in his 
treatise on the geology of the islands. Graciosa is 
8 J/2 miles long and 5 across, with 9,000 inhabitants. 
It exports wine and cattle. In 1810, Almeida Gar- 
rett, the Portuguese literary leader, visited the island. 
The name means "gracious," and the reference is 
to the beauty of its scenery and its green fields. 

San Jorge exports wines, flax, cheese and butter, 
mostly to the well-to-do in Lisbon. It is 36 miles 
long and AYl broad, with 1 7,000 people and a peas- 
antry which has tenaciously clung to its old customs 
and costumes. 

Terceira Island is the only one of the group in 
which bull-fighting has survived. It is the home 
of old Gungunhana, African chief captured in a re- 
volt in Portuguese East Africa. The dimensions are 
1 9 by 9. It took a prominent part in the wars be- 
tween two Portuguese kings, and erected Castle Me- 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

moria in memory of one of them, Don Pedro IV, at 
Angra do Heroismo, the capital. Angra is built 
on a slope and flanked by Monte Brazil, an emi- 
nence overlooking the harbor. It boasts a fine brass 
band and a hospitality that is unusual. There are 
about 50,000 inhabitants on the island. On a clear 
day the islands of Graciosa, San Jorge and Pico can 
be seen, and the effect is marvelous. Cattle, butter, 
alcohol and corn are exported. 

Fayal Island witnessed in 1814 a naval battle 
between the British and the Americans under Capt. 
Samuel C. Reid, after whom the Destroyer Reid was 
named, in which Capt. Reid emerged victorious. It 
is 14 miles long by 9^2 wide, and contains the Cal- 
deira, a fine crater amidships of the island. Fla- 
mengos, a village, has a Flemish population; Horta, 
the capital, is one of the most picturesque cities in 
the group, nestled in among steep hills and with a 
good harbor. There are 25,000 people or approxi- 
mately that number. 

Pico Island is 30 miles long and 10 across, with 
a population of about 30,000, and exports wine and 
fruit. Its main attraction is its great mountain, 
which raises its head to a height of 7,460 feet, 749 
feet higher than the loftiest peak in the United States 
east of the Rocky Mountains (Mt. Mitchell, North 
Carolina). At the top is a small crater which still 
belches forth volcanic smoke. Mons. Fouque, men- 
tioned in the foregoing, ascended this height and 
engraved the word "France" at the mouth of the 
grotto. The climate is recommended for con- 
sumptives. Grapes and wines abound. 

Flores (flowers) is 12 miles by 9 and has nearly 
10,000 people. It is the farthest west of the group, 
with Santa Cruz as the capital. Grain, cattle and 
butter are exported, and caves, waterfalls and grot- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

toes are the principal attractions. The highest point 
is 3,087 feet. 

Corvo, smallest island of them all, is 4 J/2 miles 
by 3, and boasts 806 peasants, living in 192 dwell- 
ings in one settlement. In 1832 the population 
was only 1 00, and the 706 increase represents an 
internal growth. Door locks and thieves are un- 
known; isolation forces the peasants in winter to 
light bonfires to attract residents of Flores when 
help is needed. 

It was into this little nest of islands that the old 
First Division of destroyers wended its way late in 
July, 1917, and took up its base. We became fond 
of our Portuguese allies from the very start. We 
had been thrust into a new environment that was 
so different that it charmed us and challenged our 
admiration. Gladly did we accept the advances of 
the Azoreans as they showed us their town; grate- 
fully did we acknowledge their help as we swapped 
our dollars for their reis at the rate of 1,500 reis, 
strong money, per dollar. Their politeness and 
courtesy astonished us. The costumes of the peas- 
ants attracted us, as did the primitive way they lived. 
Surely here were the happiest bare-footed workers 
in the world, toiling as day laborers for 35 cents 
a day and as farmers for a pittance. Yet think of 
what 35 cents would buy: oranges and bananas 10 
cents a dozen, pineapples three for a quarter, Irish 
and sweet potatoes three-quarters of a cent per 
pound, wine two cents a glass, practically all other 
vegetables per pound three cents or less. No High 
Cost of Living there, even in war times! And wages 
went up to 50 cents, it was said, while we were at 
the base. High living naturally costs more. Gaso- 
line to run the automobiles to see the sights of Fur- 
nas was about $1 per gallon, and none too much to 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

spare at that. Sugar was dear, making little cocoa- 
nut cakes cost 4 cents each; chocolate was hardly 
obtainable and all candies high and scarce and poor; 
but as for meals, American sailors were defied to 
eat as much as they could at the American Cafe for 
a dollar, which meant three helpings of chicken, beef- 
steak and everything else if the gob so chose, and our 
stiff-jointed friend at the Orion Cafe set a mighty 
good dinner for the same price, but with less of fowls 
and more of pig. Azorean hens did their best to 
supply the demand for eggs at 1 8 cents per dozen. 

It was a treat to feed the spiritual man on the 
wonders of nature in the Azores: gardens with a 
profuseness and beauty and fragrance of flowers 
scarcely surpassed anywhere; caves caused by fis- 
sures in the honey-combed slag, their entrances 
draped with moss and ferns; pretty little ponds and 
lakes belted with winding pathways and plots of 
grass running down to the water's edge; a lone wind- 
mill far up in the hills, turning merrily in the sum- 
mer's breezes; a peasant threading his weary way 
down the hill road with his cart full of sugar beets 
or brush or faggots. 

Scenery in the Azores is prettier than in Bermuda 
because it has more color and is more rugged. It 
typifies the seeming hard life of the peasant in his 
long, sweaty hours day by day as he toils to make 
a good crop, and it bespeaks the quality of his soul, 
which glorifies the beautiful. There is hardly an 
acre of uncultivated ground on the Azorean hillsides. 
The farms are cut up into little tracts of two to six 
acres by the landlords and are leased out to the ten- 
ants. They are inclosed in high stone walls which 
age covers with moss and discoloration, and from 
a distance these patches, bright with green vegeta- 
bles and waving brown grain, broken with an occa- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

sional vineyard, and colors we wot not of, present 
the effect of crazy-quilt, a picture never to be for- 
gotten by the passing voyager. 

Down in the villages, peaceful people keep the 
shops, handle the peasants' produce for the villagers 
and the ships, attend the park musicales, frequent 
the cafes, loll on the benches, go to church when 
Sunday rolls around. The streets are narrow and 
usually cobble-stoned; they wind as occasion de- 
mands, past low buildings kalsomined in the gay 
tints of the rainbow — pink, green, blue, brown, lav- 
ender, orange and white, but never black. The 
dwellings are in many cases pretentious, and sur- 
rounded with walls and acreage. Walls, walls — 
everywhere are walls, for cats to perch upon and 
senhorinas to hide behind! On the other side of the 
wall senhor thrums a guitar and sings his love song. 
Upstairs near the postoffice the musical club of the 
young Azoreans meets twice a week regularly — 
Wednesday and Sunday afternoon and night, and 
informally at will; keeps the neighborhood dancing 
a jig and especially the sailor searching for diversion. 

If Ponta Delgada and the other ports of the 
Azores had better hotel facilities, they would draw 
tourist crowds in record numbers from the unsettled 
parts of the world. They represent at least one 
spot on this mundane sphere where peace and san- 
ity still reign supreme. Little else is to be desired 
there below; steamship lines with good steamers 
from the principal ports touch at Ponta Delgada; 
all they need is a thoroughly modern hotel or two 
for each town and managers who speak Portuguese, 
either more or less; also more automobiles. 

We had been ashore only an hour or two when 
we learned that the Azoreans were predisposed to 
treat the Americans with the greatest respect and 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

courtesy. This was due to the fact that the Collier 
Orion, commanded by Lieut. J. Boesch, USN, had 
driven away a submarine which on the early morn- 
ing of July 4 had steamed in to bombard Ponta 
Delgada. In unloading coal, the Orion had as- 
sumed a list which threw her stern high in the air, 
so that her stern gun could be trained above the 
city's breakwater. The submarine fired three or 
four shots at a distance of two or three miles, from 
a five-inch or six-inch gun, these shells hitting in Faja 
de Cima, a suburb above Ponta Delgada, near the 
far-famed windmill, and killing a girl of 1 6 years 
and wounding several women seriously. Portu- 
guese troops of the local garrison sought to return 
the fire from a fort, but their gun and ammunition 
were so defective that they could do nothing; yet a 
few quick shots from the gun of the Orion caused 
the U-boat to submerge and steam away. 

The grateful islanders went in a solid phalanx 
to the Orion to thank her commander and to press 
upon him a handsome silver service. Their enthu- 
siastic young leaders posted placards calling for a 
mass meeting on the day following to adopt a flag 
signifying autonomy and to petition their friends the 
Americans for a protectorate. Desire for a form 
of independence had become acute because the 
Azoreans claimed that while they had been forced 
for years to pay tribute to Lisbon in the sum of 
$2,000,000 yearly, they did not receive reciprocally 
in government expenditures for island improvements 
more than a small fraction of that sum; further- 
more, they asserted, all efforts to obtain railroads 
and other commercial and industrial enterprises 
through British and American capital had been 
blocked by a wilful little coterie of land barons and 
exploiters of the peasantry nearly a thousand miles 
away. The Governor of the Island persuaded the 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

patriots not to assemble by ordering Portuguese gun- 
boats into the harbor, so the independence of the 
Azores was postponed indefinitely. 

On July 29 the Orion sailed away to the tune of 
songs and cheers and whistles of half the local popu- 
lation assembled at the quay, and on that self-same 
day Evaristo Ferreira Travassos, the lace dealer and 
stationer, piped her praises thusly through the native 

Ponta Delgada, on the Fourth of July, without the 
Orion in its port, might have been a stonepile. For 
this, it rests with the corporation and the municipal 
government to present to the captain of the Orion a 
sincere expression of their gratitude. The dawn of 
July Fourth — who can ever forget it? Who can ever 
forget the awakening horror of a sleeping city that at 
vespers the night before went peacefully to its repose 
without any premonition of the death and destruction 
ahead? The unhappy Thomasia that in her poor vil- 
lage fled to the street full of fear and terror, little 

did she know at vesper time that at daybreak of the 
following morn the splinters of a German grenade — 
vehicle of a civilization still much appreciated among 
us — would fracture her skull, causing instantaneous 
death I 

We must not forget the frequent visits that the cap- 
tain made to the wounded in the hospital and to the 
scene of the disaster, especially to the old owners of 
the house on which the grenade fell and who miracu- 
lously escaped death. Sail the seas proudly to the land 
of liberty and of Washington, and when you arrive, 
tell your compatriots that you carry in your soul the 
gratitude of a whole people; and if some day you re- 
turn in company with your comrades, may you bring 
branches of olive as messengers of peace! 

It was into this atmosphere of cordial gratitude 
that the rough-and-ready gobs of the Dungaree 
Navy, as represented by the First Division of five 
coal-burning destroyers (the Reid, flagship; the Pres- 
ton, the Lamson, the Flusser and the Smith), were 
catapulted in their mad dash after the Hun. They 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

bought Orion cigarettes, Orion souvenirs, Orion pil- 
low cases, quaffed Orion beverages and kissed Orion 
babies barely old enough to kiss. Hospitality was 
so open-handed and open-kegged that on the very 
first night of general liberty — August 1 — a fight 
broke out that was anything but an expression of 
the mutual good feeling which prevailed. Sticks 
and stones and oaths and fists and pistol shots began 
to fly, with the result that the gobs finally repaired 
to their vessels in the harbor and several natives fled 
to the hospital. While the excitement was at its 
height, somebody on the Lamson fired a three-inch 
gun, thinking to call the sailors back aboard, but 
this created panic in the theatres, since the people 
thought submarine vandals had returned. Lieut. 
H. H. Good, of the Reid, ordered out the rifles and 
was about to send a landing party ashore when the 
disorder subsided. It was wild enough for an hour 
to turn Captain Kidd's thatch another color than red! 
"Seria cerca da meia noite de terca feira," asserted 
the newspaper A Republica, "quando se sentiu nesta 
cidade um tiro de canhao, que como e natural alar- 
mou toda a gente, na previsao de que a cidade estava 
sendo novamente atacada." And the editor said 
a lot of other things not trimmed with curse words, 
the translation running somewhat as follows : 

It must have been about midnight of night before last 
when our city was startled by the sound of a cannon 
shot, which very naturally alarmed the entire popula- 
tion, causing the belief that our city was again attacked. 
In the pursuit of our mission we rushed to Baixa Street 
and there we found in progress a regular battle between 
American sailors, civilians, civil guard and police, a 
very serious disorder which might have brought about 
grave consequences. The shot, which had been fired by 
one of the destroyers anchored in our harbor, soon 
brought on the scene the officers and guards on shore. 
There it was not possible to secure definite information, 
but all agreed in attributing it to several civilian dis- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

turbers of the peace on the one hand, and to the fumes 
of alcohol on the other. 

In the theatre, where was being staged a performance 
by the actor Cunha Moreira, an awful panic was caused, 
and many ladies fainted. All imagined a new bombard- 
ment, and most of the people began to leave, com- 
mencing to run, anxious to know the cause of the fir- 
ing, which brought to mind that which took place dur- 
ing the performance of "Velho Alsaciano" and caused 
the play to be interrupted. 

Those who found it necessary to go to the hospital 
for treatment were: the two policemen, No. 31, Manuel 
de Medeiros Fragoso, seriously wounded in the foot 
(?), and No. 13, Caetano Rebelo, struck on the sides 
and on one arm (?), private Joao Simones Corceia, 
wounded in the head, and citizens Jose Botelho de Lima, 
in the head, Augusto Tavares, member of the crew of 
the "Autonomico", struck about the body, and Joao 
Joaquim de Azevedo, wounded by a revolver shot in 
the foot. Our worthy chief of police, Senhor Joao 
Martins Botelho, appeared on the scene of the disorder 
and his efforts were sufficient to cause the pacification 
of the excited participants. Contrary to appearances, 
we can give the assurance that the Portuguese sailors 
took absolutely no part in the conflict. 

The affair aroused the lively indignation of the 
populace, who registered a vigorous complaint. These 
regrettable happenings were generally attributed to the 
work of a half dozen miscreants, who should be 
searched out and severely punished. In any case, we 
must excuse the strangers, who became overcome by 
liquor, because, above all, they should have the sym- 
pathy of the city. In these days, indeed, in which the 
American government is sending vessels for our protec- 
tion, in order to safeguard our property and our lives, 
because of which we have contracted towards the Amer- 
ican nation, in the case of the Orion, a solemn debt 
of gratitude, in such times as these, such an occurrence 
as that of night before last offends the sensibilities of 
nearly all the inhabitants of the city, and it would be 
unworthy of all of us if we failed to protest. 

Our skipper happened to be drawing more depth 
than any other naval gent in those waters afloat, so 



On Aug. 25, 1917, the Reid escorted the Dante from 
Ponta Delgada toward Gibraltar. In 1918 three vessels 
with the Alighieri were sunk, but she eluded the sub. 


ri r*. £ ? 

X =4-. 2 



m k h* 

A satisfied A/.orean peasant who could not be per- 
suaded to wear shoes unless somebody perpetrated the 
O. Henry hoax of scattering chestnut burrs through 
the streets. His "automobile" carries him anywhere. 

For ten months the Panther, under Capt. Andre M. 
Procter, served the First Division of destroyers in Eu- 
ropean waters, and many regrets were expressed when 
she left to base on Pauillac, near Bordeaux. 

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In order to rectify variations in our compasses, the 
evolution of "swinging ship" was resorted to. Our ma- 
chine lathe, lost in storm of Dec. 15-17, 1917, is shown. 

*- '% 

Here is the highest paid laborer in the Azores starting 
after American coal worth about *'3~ a ton. From a 
photograph taken through a porthole. 

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Here is a bit of spray sweeping across our stern in 
the Portuguese storm of Dec. 15-17, 1917. The need for 
individual tails is apparent. 

~ £ ~. _ 


The Reid on leaving Azores, bound for Queenstown, at 
beginning of storm. Deacon Halliburton, of Tennessee, 
Jack-of-the-Dust, is all bundled up in the foreground. 



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The Melville, flagship, and the Repair Ship Dixie lying 
in Queenstown Harbor, October, 1917, with oil-burning 

destroyers alongside. Notice the seagulls, which are 
counted in thousands. 




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Nine Weeks in the Azores 

collaborated with the American Consul, Mr. William 
Bardel, and other personages highly placed in fram- 
ing a diplomatic note to the Governor of the Island 
deploring the occurrence. This note recited the 
long-standing friendship of the two nations (the 
United States and Portugal), and as a sample of 
equatorial diplomacy it was without equal. At any 
rate, things piped down until two sailors had a fight 
in a cafe, upsetting a bird cage and breaking the ca- 
nary's leg. The cafe proprietor set down the bird's 
virtues as being worth 15,000 reis strong money 
($10), and failing to collect this amount before the 
fight principals escaped, he laid the matter before 
Mr. Bardel, whose representations, it was reliably 
reported among the native ship chandlers, caused 
gob liberty to be cut off an entire day. Should the 
State Department or the Senate ever investigate Mr. 
Bardel' s peace expenditures, it would find that he 
dropped many a reis to the bum-boat men who fer- 
ried him from ship to ship in the harbor. The next 
time this gracious and obliging American consul was 
sought, he found it convenient to be out. Dispute 
arose between the Reid's commissary officials and 
an alleged would-be profiteer ashore as to what 
amount of "tare" should be paid the baker for mak- 
ing twist rolls out of a 1 00-pound sack of American 
flour. Baker claimed he could give the Reid 1 00 
pounds of rolls and keep 25 pounds for himself, 
since cooked-up bread weighs more than flour. 
Rolls when weighed tipped scales at 90 pounds and 
led to belief profiteer counted in the weight of his 
basket. Limited knowledge of Portuguese lingo 
enabled native to get away with his version and our 
rolls. A case of down-right honesty cropped out 
a few days later, however, when a ship's cook on 
the Panther who had just sampled hotel cooking on 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Main Street received word from the proprietor to 
come over and get a wallet with $40 in it which 
he had carelessly left on the floor. 

Well, having established or confirmed amicable 
relations, we set out to find the submarine com- 
mander who had bombarded our base and new- 
found friends. At first we lacked a definite policy, 
due to the fact that we were new to the game and 
the environment. It was necessary to fit wooden 
men in square holes, to see if our guns would shoot 
and if we could hit anything should they do so, to 
impress the lookouts with the importance of keep- 
ing awake when underway, to differentiate between 
seagulls and periscopes, between lights and the 
moon, and in a dozen ways to increase efficiency. 
Lacking a policy at first, we soon adopted one, — to 
steam around the ocean looking for submarines. 
That was what we were after : SUBS, and since U- 
boats continued to sink small vessels, we continued 
our rambles. These efforts met with no success; 
every time a vessel was sunk we happened to be 
somewhere else, so there was nothing to do except 
adopt a new policy. We started convoying ships. 
This worked finely, for not a ship convoyed was 
sunk, or got a scare. 

Our skipper tried to find lookouts suffering from 
insomnia, but he evidently got a bunch who had 
never done much of anything but sleep, especially in 
back channels before the war, hence he posted the 
following warning notice with good effect : 

NOTICE — There have been a number of people 
going to sleep while acting as lookouts. Men on look- 
out must remember that perhaps the safety of the ship 
depends on their keeping wide-awake. The submarine 
that has been operating where we shall patrol is not go- 
ing to show itself very much, and in order to discover 
it our lookouts must be strictly on the job. 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

Two examples may be given of this same submarine: 
There have been about 1 vessels sunk by one sub- 
marine within a few hundred miles of the Azores, and 
in several cases victims did not see the submarine at 
all until too late, probably on account of inefficient 
lookouts. The Steamer Iran was sunk by a torpedo. 
The crew did not see the submarine until after they had 
taken to the boats and the ship was sunk. In another 
case, that of the American Bark Christiane, the first 
intimation was a shell bursting in front of them. 

Now, it is up to us to see that submarine first, then 
God help him, but if we don't see him, God help us! 

The Iran was a British steamer of 6,250 tons, 
bound for London from Calcutta with a general 
cargo, and spices and laces. She had made a wide 
detour westward in the hope of avoiding subma- 
rines along the Spanish and French coasts, but at 
7:30 A. M. on Aug. 6, 200 miles southeast of St. 
Mary's, in position 36-45 N., 20-48 W., had been 
torpedoed. Captain Bacon, of the Iran, came 
aboard the Reid and reported as follows on Aug. 8: 

It was 7:30 A. M. and we had six or eight lookouts 
stationed. Nobody saw the submarine, but a mile away 
the wake of a torpedo v/as sighted, headed for port bow. 
We went full speed and put her hard ahelm. The tor- 
pedo struck near No. 8 hatch (astern), 12-20 feet 
beneath the surface, making a deafening report, and the 
ship's lurch threw me and others on our backs and tore 
the 4-inch gun from its stern mounting so that it 
bounded overboard. The decks were awash in two 
minutes and we sank in 1 3 minutes more. I had ordered 
the men into the small boats, and as we were pulling 
away, the submarine came to the surface and ordered 
me to come alongside. 

The U-boat commander ordered me to come aboard, 
which I did promptly. A German sailor pointed a 
pistol at me and their two 4.7-inch guns, forward and 

aft, were used to cover the men in the boats, these 

being 73 Lascars and 1 5 Europeans. The crew ap- 
peared pleased when told the name of my vessel, and 
one looked up the ship in a ship register. I was then 
ordered back to my boat and told to proceed to St. 













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Nine Weeks in the Azores 

Michael's Island, 200 miles away. I asked, "Do you 
think we can make it in these small boats?" "Maybe 
so, maybe not," he replied, handing me some sea bis- 
cuits like those used on Spanish ships. We rowed fast 
to get away from them, and they did not submerge for 
several hours. Their crew was dark and villainous 
looking, and glared at us. Our third mate, who was on 
duty when we were hit, said he saw another submarine 
standing by. The U-boat I boarded was 250-300 feet 
long, 12-15 feet beam and had a tonnage of 1000-1500 

The British Steamer Hortensius, Houston Line, (Capt. 
Davies), bound from Belle He to Dakir, picked us up at 
4 P. M. after we had been in the water 8*4 hours, 
and put into Ponta Delgada with us on Aug. 8. Our 
crew has been housed temporarily on the island here 
and will be reassigned soon at the nearest British port. 

The Iran's steward told Reid how 40 Britishers 
of the Belgian Prince were stood on a submarine 
deck and all but three drowned when the U-boat 
finally submerged. 

The Hortensius reported having received an SOS 
from the French Steamer Enverin on Aug. 6, saying 
she was being shelled and chased by a submarine in 
position 35-22 N., 18-50 W., the time being 2 P. M. 
What became of the Enverin was not learned. 

On Saturday, August 11, at 6 P. M., just as the 
evening shadows were preparing to fall over the 
island, an island tug puffed into the harbor at Ponta 
Delgada towing two small life boats in which make- 
shift sails had been raised, and which carried 18 
survivors of the American Bark Christiane, Capt. 
C. M. Crooks. The crew's fuzzy cur dog stood 
proudly in the bow of the leading life boat, with his 
paws resting on the gunwales. Part of the Reid's 
crew were just going ashore on liberty and directed 
Capt. Crooks how to reach the Reid, accompanied 
by two of his outfit. The old salt told the follow- 
ing tale of his experience : 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

The Christiane, an American bark of 9 1 8 tons, re- 
ceived a shot across her bow at 7 P. M., Aug. 7, in 
position 36-42 N., 20-52 W., about 100 miles south- 
west of St. Mary's Island. That was Tuesday. We 
were ordered to abandon the bark, and got into our life 
boats. I was taken aboard the submarine and ques- 
tioned, and the commander said, "I am sorry to do 
this, but it is my business. I wish the war was over." 
The U-boat captain grew friendly and confided that he 
had sunk two steamers that day and a bark (maybe the 
Marthe) in that approximate position. He gave me a 
receipt for the vessel signed with his own name. Then 
he sent a bombing party aboard the Christiane and blew 
her up with time bombs. She sank quickly. He gave 
us some life preservers and biscuits and the direction 
to St. Michael's, which we reached after strenuous row- 

Capt. Crooks said the submarine looked like the 
U-53, which visited Newport, R. I., in 1916 and on 
the way back out to sea sank several British mer- 
chant ships. It was called the Deutschland II by 
the captain of the French Steamer Magellan, which 
put into Ponta Delgada Wednesday, Aug. 8, and 
left Friday, Aug. 1 0. Others thought it was the 
same submarine commanded by Lieut. Meusel with 
Lieut. A. L. (or A. C. ) Eyring, which operated off 
the Azores July 18-22. The crew were described 
as dark and stocky, with dark hair. 

The receipt given Capt. Crooks bore the name of 
Lieut. Eyring and read as follows, translated from 
the German: 

Originally from Finland. Registered March, 1917, 
under American flag. Bark Christiane, at Sea, Aug. 7, 
1917. A. L. (or A. C.) Eyring, Oberleutnant, V. 1. y. 
S. M. Unterseeboot X. 

The German seal read thus: 

Kaiserliche Marine, Kommander der II Unterseeboots. 

At five minutes after midnight, Aug. 8, the Reid 
and the Preston got underway from Ponta Delgada 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

in response to a radio message from the French Bark 
Marthe saying she was being shelled 200 miles south- 
east of St. Mary's Island. At 1 A. M. the Lamson 
joined and a white life boat with the name Marthe 
painted on it in black letters was discovered. It 
was smashed on the starboard side, was partly filled 
with water and contained some oars and a life pre- 
server or two. We also passed a cabin chair, some 
wreckage and another life boat, bottom side up. 
Later we heard that the Marthe's gun crew fought 
the attacking submarine for an hour in a running 
fight, and did not surrender until four of her gun- 
ners had been killed; likewise that 35 of her crew 
were picked up by the British Steamer Marswield 
and landed at Funchal, Madeira. Her men had 
been tossed about four days in their small boats. 

Other reports of submarines and ship disasters 
follow : 

During July: Canadian Schooner Wilhelmina Ger- 
trude, U. S. Schooner Jno. Twohy, and Norwegian 
Schooner Hanseat and Norwegian Steamer Horland 
sunk around islands with time bombs; unknown French 
steamer sunk 125 miles southwest of St. Mary's; Prinz 
Oscar, Norwegian steamer, sunk Aug. 8, 150 miles 
southeast of St. Mary's. Submarines: Aug. 6, at 2 P. 
M., 35-22 N., 18-50 W.; Tuesday, Aug. 7, 7 A. M., 36- 
45 N., 20-48 W.; 8 P. M., 35-37 N., 23-45 W. 

Through August and September, 1917, convoy 
and patrol duty continued in this fashion. We went 
out for two or three days, then came in for a few 
days of coaling, rest and liberty, then fared forth 
again. At sea we usually encountered smooth wa- 
ter and beautiful weather, and in port we enjoyed 
excursions ashore to the fullest. The nights inside 
the breakwater at Ponta Delgada proved delightful; 
many of the sailors pulled their bedding to the fore- 
castle to catch the full strength of the breezes. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Astern of us usually lay the Portuguese Gunboat 
Cinquo du Outubro (The Fifth of October), which 
boasted a mighty bugler. This bugler tooted his 
bugle every hour or two each day, reminding us of 
war at first, but finally making us believe his solo 
bespoke the peaceful serenity of things. The bum- 
boat men became a part of our daily lives, and we 
always got a thrill as the red flag was raised at the 
quay by the customs officials, denoting that a war- 
ship was standing into port. The San Miguel, 
steamer, stole in now and then from other ports of 
the islands. The American yachts came and went 
on to France; so with the fish boats or tugs, and 
finally the submarine chasers. 

It soon came our turn to go on to France, too. 
The natives came aboard for the last time about Oct. 
1 to coal us up, bunkers and deck, and left their 
cheerful cries of "Porokee! Porokee!" ("Come over 
here! Come over here!") ringing in our ears. On 
Oct. 5 the ships hauled out their gay pennants to 
honor Portugal's seven years as a republic, the Amer- 
icans entertained the islanders with a baseball game, 
and the Mother Ship Panther left for Queenstown, 
convoyed by the Destroyers Preston, Smith and 
Lamson. The next day the Reid and the Flusser 
laid in a six-days' supply of vegetables from ashore, 
and on the seventh (Sunday), after the men had 
attended church, left for Queenstown, convoying 
the Collier Nero. Our friends the Azoreans gath- 
ered at the landing and waved at us and shouted 
us a hearty farewell. 

After a day out, a furious storm broke upon us, 
which lasted 78 hours; for details, see sketch herein 
entitled "Standing by the Wing Locker." After 
coaling at Queenstown we proceeded with the Nero 
through the submarine-infested Bristol Channel to 


Nine Weeks in the Azores 

Cardiff, Wales, accompanied by the Flusser. Re- 
turning to Queenstown, we nearly hit a floating mine 
and were hit by a sharp all-night blow which lifted 
our motor boat off the deck and sent lots of water 
into the compartments. Awaiting orders, we lay 
moored in Queenstown Harbor five days, near Ad- 
miral Sims' Flagship, the Melville, and the Repair 
Ship Dixie; saw the Destroyer Cassin put into dock 
with her fantail blown off; got a good look at the 
Irish, Irish castles and pretty Irish girls, but on ac- 
count of short liberty hours and official restrictions 
were unable to get far into the country or to visit 
Dublin or Cork. We noticed a tenseness in Cardiff 
and Queenstown caused by the rigid conditions of 
the war, and this spirit shed a different light on the 
new work we were to assume. 



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H>vN Map of 



Br^sx France 

R&de de B?est 

KEY: 1 — Admiral's Office. 2 — Army Headquarters and Postoffice. 
3 — Y. M. C. A. Money Exchange. 4 — Restaurants. 5 — Dormitory. 
8 — Store-house. 10 — Navy Hut. 13 — Officer's Club. 14 — Navy Can- 
teen. 15 — Patrol Office and Navy Postoffice. 16 — Small Stores. 17 
— French Postoffice. 18 — Army Base Hospital No. 1. 22 — Market. 
23 — American Consul. 24 — British Consul. 25 — British Headquar- 
ters. 26 — Protestant Church. 27 — Catholic Church. 29 — Municipal 
Theatre. 30 — Y. M. C. A. Headquarters. 



O" N Friday, Oct. 19, 1917, the Panther, mother 
ship of the First Division of coal-burning 
destroyers, left Queenstown, convoyed by 
the Lamson, the Smith and the Preston, and 
on Sunday, Oct. 2 1 , they arrived at Brest as the first 
organized unit for destroyer convoy service to base 
on this important European port. On Oct. 2 1 the 
Flusser and the Reid left Queenstown, arriving at 
Brest Monday, Oct. 22, thus making the unit com- 
plete at the new base. 

The duty of the division during its 1 4 months 
at Brest was to escort convoys out several hundred 
miles toward the United States, then usually to 
meet an eastbound convoy at rendezvous and escort 
it into Brest, or occasionally to Quiberon Bay or 
Bordeaux. On several occasions we went nearly 
1 000 miles to the west, since it had become the 
custom of submarine commanders to drop far out 
(400 or 500 miles) and bag a prize, as in the case 
of the President Lincoln, whose destroyer escort is 
supposed to have been speeding back to base when 
she was sunk. The range of the division included 
the lower sweep of the English Channel at its con- 
fluence near Brest, the southern coast of England 
and Ireland and as far south (on occasion) as Spain 
and Portugal. One or two of our destroyers 
reached Gibraltar on a special mission. The gen- 
eral convoy and escort plan was thought out intelli- 
gently and was executed by the commanding offi- 
cers with precision and admirable devotion to duty. 

In the late spring and early summer of 1918, when 
the French were sorely tried and the British were 
fighting with "backs to the wall" in defense of the 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Channel ports of Dunkirk and Calais, the American 
troops began to arrive at Brest at the rate of 250,000 
to J 00, 000 pel month, and it was during this period 
that the coal burners and destroyers which had been 
sent from Queenstown saw their hardest service. It 
was convoy out for two days, convoy in for two 
days, make a short liberty, coal ship (frequently all 
night long), and repeat the performance. These 
were our most melancholy days, and likewise our 
happiest days, because we felt that our licks were 
now counting for the most. In this duty the yachts 
and submarine chasers and mine-sweepers and tugs 
rendered notable service, mostly close along the 
French Coast In two weeks a mine-sweeping tug 
bagged fourteen German mines: and the part played 
by these redoubtable craft will be adequately told 
one of these days. The Repair Ships Panther. 
Bridgeport and Prometheus held up their end in 

amendable fashion, it is unnecessary to say. 

Secretary Baker will probably have no hard 
feelings at this late date to learn that when he landed 
at Brest on Sunday. March 10. 1918, a day before 
executing his famous "down cellar" movement in 
Paris, he probably plowed through a mine field on 
the Cruiser Seattle. He should feel good over it. 
A wireless message sent the group was intercepted 
by the Reid. It had evidently been delayed in 
transmission This was immediately shown to the 
officer of the deck, a man who could often pull 
strange things out of the very- air. and he said: "Too 
late to decode that message now: I think I know 
what it contains: it tells us to steer around a mine 
held we just passed through." All's well that ends 
well, and so with many little mishaps in the big war 

It seemed to be German policy (in return for ex- 

The Base at Brest 

pected commercial concessions after the war) to sink 
no troopships coming into France from America, 
if the record is any indication. Numerous empty 
transports were torpedoed or attacked but appar- 
ently none blown up going east, the destroyer pro- 
tection being practically the same in both directions. 
The case of the Tuscania, a British ship carrying 
about 2,000 doughboys, was one of the exceptions 
of '..he war, but it was torpedoed in Irish waters, with 
a loss of about 171. Numerous merchant ships with 
munitions and food were sent down coming into 
France; Admiral Wilson took no chance, but dealt 
the protection out according to the resources in hand. 
This view is largely confirmed in a feature of the 
story of the war by Gen. Erich von Ludendorff, 
chief of the German General Staff. Gen. Luden- 
dorff's account is somewhat contradictory but he 
gives the impression that the Germans felt it ad- 
vantageous to concentrate on merchant tonnage and 
cargoes and to sink American troopships only in- 
cidentally. A few paragraphs from his statement as 
presented by the International News Service follow : 

From our previous experience of the submarine war 
I expected strong forces of Americans to come. But the 
rapidity with which they actually did arrive proved sur- 
prising. General von Cramen, the German military 
plenipotentiary with the Austrian imperial and royal 
headquarters, often called me up, and asked me to insist 
on the sinking of American troopships; public opinion 
in Austria-Hungary demanded it. Admiral von Holtz- 
endorff could only reply that everything was being done 
to reduce enemy tonnage and to sink troopships. 

It was not possible to direct the submarines against 
troopships exclusively. They could approach the coasts 
of Europe anywhere between the north of England and 
Gibraltar, a front of some 1,400 nautical miles. It was 
impossible effectively to close this area by means of 
submarines. One could only have concentrated them 
on certain routes; but whether the troopships would 
choose the same routes at the same time was the ques- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

tion. As soon as the enemy heard of submarines any- 
where, he could always send the ships fresh orders by 
wireless and unload at another port. 

It was, therefore, not certain that by this method we 
should meet with a sufficient number of troopships. 
The destruction of the enemy's freight tonnage would 
then have been undertaken only spasmodically and 
would have been set back in an undesirable manner; 
and in that way the submarine war would have become 
diverted from its original object. 

The submarine war against commerce was therefore 
continued with all the vigor possible. According to the 
information available, the enemy's remaining tonnage 
and his food supply was so reduced that the hope of at- 
taining our object by this means was justified. The 
shortage of cargo space, at any rate, was established. 

The General's argument that troopships could 
change course and put into any one of a number of 
ports, and the submarines could not tell which way 
they would go, applies equally to merchant vessels, 
and since the Huns did attack and sink many mer- 
chantmen coming into France from the United States 
and did not attack the troopships to any extent, the 
conclusion is inevitable that instructions to U-boat 
commanders covered this point definitely, though it 
is difficult to understand how the commanders dis- 
tinguished transports from merchantmen in the 
short time they had for observation. In many 
cases and particularly during the early days of Amer- 
ica's participation in the war, the transports had 
better protection than the cargo vessels. The 
American destroyers at Brest usually convoyed the 
troopships, while the yachts and French sloops and 
destroyers convoyed the merchant ships, which 
mostly put into ports south of Brest, usually Bor- 
deaux. Later on, however, as new destroyers from 
home relieved the Queenstown destroyers and re- 
leased them for service at Brest, the protection of 
the costal convoys was increased. Naturally the 


The Base at Brest 

merchantmen were slower than the transports and 
were easier victims. The Leviathan was one ex- 
treme at 24 knots and the Wabash or Mexican at 8 
knots another. A U-boat might get one "pot shot" 
at a fleeting transport, whereas by steaming with a 
convoy of "slow boys" it might take half a dozen 
shots covering a period of 1 2 hours or even longer. 
Then if a "lame duck" (ship in a temporary break- 
down) fell behind, it had not much more than an 
even chance to reach port. 

From the information obtainable, therefore, it 
would seem that the Germans concentrated on Brit- 
ish tonnage and cargoes in the hope of forcing Great 
Britain to her knees, which would have won the war 
finally as far as continental Europe was concerned. 
They gave for the most part an incidental attention 
to American troopships and cargo vessels, because 
of that policy, and further because they hoped Amer- 
ica would be too late to save her Allies, and it would 
hasten American participation at the front to sink 
any appreciable number of doughboys. Further- 
more, the German leaders believed that under a 
traditionally altruistic policy America would give 
back to Germany or pay for every seized German 
ship ; if the U-boats sank them, Germany would lose 
them, and she needed tonnage badly in the com- 
mercial war to follow the war. However, it is an- 
nounced that German ships are to be kept for other 
tonnage destroyed. It was entirely a different mat- 
ter to sink an occasional empty American transport 
going to the United States, manned by a crew of 300 
to 700 men, and risk the loss of a handful, as a sam- 
ple for the folks at home of German frightfulness. 
An analysis of the principal American ship losses as 
reported unofficially at Brest sheds light on this pol- 
icy. The first vessels to be torpedoed, the Antilles 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

and the Finland, both American, were attacked 
while steaming from France toward the United 
States. The Antilles sank and the Finland was able 
to return to port at Brest. The Covington and the 
President Lincoln, old German liners, were sunk 
while returning to America. It is probably true that 
the first American troopships sent to France were 
attacked by submarines, as a warning of what might 
follow, but these attacks were not generally con- 

Among merchantmen, the Westward-Ho, the 
West Bridge, the Cubore and the Montanan were all 
hit while making for French ports from America, 
and these facts seem to establish that the Germans 
drew a line between the personal and the financial 
elements in the situation. 

Naval authorities have stated the estimates of sub- 
marines operating at any given time off England, 
Ireland and France, and the destruction of submar- 
ines by destroyers and in nets, were greatly exagger- 
ated. Off the Azores at any one average time there 
were supposed to have been not more than two U- 
boats operating; off the coast of France not exceed- 
ing four or six, and at periods as few as a single pair. 
Indications of submarine strength were best given in 
radio messages reporting attacks and suspicious 
circumstances; these SOS calls in the aforesaid area 
were made in practically all cases where signs of 
submarines were seen, and they seldom if ever 
showed that more than six were active. Of course 
the same U-boat might be reported several times a 

The American war vessels based on Brest offic- 
ially credited with submarines, as indicated by the 
stars they wore on their smokestacks, were the De- 
stroyers Fanning, Tucker and Stewart, and the Yacht 


This high structure and surrounding buildings fur- 
nished the first view which hordes of our soldiers and 
sailors had of Europe's chief port of landing. 


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On Oct. 23, 1917, 24 hours after taking up our base at 
Brest, our bow was rammed by the Tug James, putting 
us into dry dock. The James and her skipper escaped. 


Sunday afternoons during- the war the Bretons used to 
promenade out to The Rocks at Plougastel, and here is 
a prosperous party crossing a neck of Rade de Brest. 

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Here is a freak of nature which is more striking in its 
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The Hospital Ship Comfort, sister of the Mercy, which 
abandoned plan to steam Lighted up at night; the Trans- 
port Ohioan getting underway at Quiberon, and the 

Transport Henderson Hearing Brest. 

Swinging ship, Dec. 15, 1917, at Quiberon Bay, 
France, where John Paul Jones got 9 French guns in 
1778, celebrating the independence of the Colonies. 




Mademoiselle is behind, Madam between her husband 
and the naughty little boy. The officer is home at Royan, 
near Bordeaux, on leave from the front, and is not think- 
ing- much about the war. 



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who owns the great rocks and the old-fashioned ferry 
which people must patronize to see them. He enjoys a 
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The Base at Brest 

Christabel. There may have been transports in 
addition to the Mongolia; also vessels at Queens- 
town (where the Fanning got her star). 

Mr. Lloyd-George told Parliament in 1918 that 
the British accounted for five submarines one Satur- 
day. Whether the Admiralty allowed stars to be 
hung up was not known. The Reid failed to notice 
any stars in her cruises with British destroyers. 

Admiral William S. Sims, commander of the 
United States Naval Forces in European Waters, with 
headquarters at London, indicates in his story of 
sea warfare as presented by Pearson's Magazine, 
London, and in this country beginning in September 
by the World's Work and other publications, that 
Germany did not want to antagonize America, feel- 
ing that our forces would be too late to gain victory, 
and that we would be counted as her "friend" after 
the war; also that our armed merchantmen were not 
seriously attacked. Admiral Sims estimates the 
largest number of submarines operating at any one 
time between the North Coast of Ireland and Brest 
at 15, and states that they ranged from that figure 
to as low as four. The American secret service and 
radio reports furnished the basis of these estimates. 

Admiral Sims declares he concurred in the British 
official opinion expressed early in 1917 that unless 
new devices were introduced or help rushed quickly 
from the United States, our Allies would be hope- 
lessly beaten, and this view he cabled to the Admin- 
istration at Washington. As an offset to pacifism 
and pro-Germanism, he cabled later that the pyro- 
technic effect of submarine attacks along the Ameri- 
can Atlantic Coast should not deter us in our duty 
and purpose to whip the Germans in Europe, for 
they would be inaugurated without any idea of real 
destructive value but for the purpose of diverting 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

American destroyers from the main object of assist- 
ing the British seamen to down the Hun. It was 
Admiral Sims' opinion that had Germany sent her 
submarines to our shores upon our declaration of 
war in April, 1917, instead of waiting until 1918, 
she would have won the conflict. He indicates that 
the pacifism with which so many of our war ef- 
forts were tainted and ham-strung would have kept 
our destroyers from crossing the seas. His story 
throughout is an illuminating though conservative 
account of the glorious part played by our sailors in 
the fight to save France, Belgium, Great Britain and 

On the whole, the officers of the anti-submarine 
craft were of a high type, courageous, efficient, ap- 
proachable and generally humane. They possessed 
the initiative that is necessary to the success of mili- 
tary measures. There were some exceptions to this 
rule, but the exceptions will soon pass. The men 
of the crews met their tasks with fortitude and un- 
complainingly, and civilian sailors generally praised 
them as fair and square and worthy of the name of 

Our physical needs were well attended to by Uncle 
Sam, in respect to food and clothing and recreation, 
and the part played by the home folks in providing 
little comforts, often at heavy personal sacrifice, will 
never be forgotten. Altogether it was a great ex- 
perience. We learned to like and respect the 
French, too, who suffered most severely through the 
war; it was a pleasure to divide our gifts with the 
little Breton tots and to feel that the French appre- 
ciated what we did for them. Many things we shall 
forget, but never the experiences that we encountered 
while serving in the old First Division based on Brest. 

An unfortunate occurrence was noted in the mid- 

The Base at Brest 

die of August, 1918, which served to transform the 
Good Ship Reid temporarily from a home into 
something else. At noon of Tuesday, August 1 3, 
the crew had put on 45 tons of coal, and at 4 P. M. 
the Reid steamed in smooth water toward Bordeaux 
with the Lamson. On Wednesday morning the two 
destroyers met a convoy of 30 merchant vessels 
bound for the United States, with the Yachts Aphro- 
dite (senior escort), Noma and Corsair in charge. 
After convoying these vessels a sufficient distance 
westward, an eastbound group of 1 7 merchantmen 
was picked up Thursday, bound for French ports. 
At 7 P. M. the Montanan, of the Hawaiian-Amer- 
ican line (convoyed Jan. 28, 1918, by the Reid 
from Plymouth, England, to Quiberon Bay, France) 
was struck by a torpedo; position approximately 46- 
40 N., 12-25 W. Her 81 survivors quickly put off 
in small boats and were picked up by the Noma. 
The water here was also comparatively smooth. The 
wireless reported that a torpedo had passed under 
the stern of another ship, thought to have been an 

At 10 P. M. the Cubore, another American ves- 
sel, of about 7500 tons and slightly larger than the 
Montanan, was torpedoed. Her 50 passengers were 
picked up by the Etourdi, sprightly French des- 
troyer, which had been doing good work along 
the coast. The vessel sank in about an hour. The 
submarine was evidently following the convoy, 
which was making only eight or ten knots. The con- 
voy seemed to be divided into two or three units in 
close touch with each other, and the Reid was with 
one of these. 

Midnight came and ushered in Friday, Aug. 1 6. 
The 12-4 A. M. watch had been on duty only 
an hour when the American Ship West Bridge (sister 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

ship of the Westward-Ho, torpedoed Aug 8) was 
struck. The captain of the West Bridge wirelessed 
the other ships that he had little hope of saving his 
vessel. (Flour in her hold kept her floating and she 
finally made port at Brest). The skipper and 99 
survivors, who included two American girls dressed 
in watch caps and dungarees, were picked up after 
several hours in life boats by the Destroyer Burrows. 
The Drayton dropped depth charges on an oil slick, 
with doubtful results, and the Aphrodite reported 
having seen a large submarine submerge. At 3 P. 
M. the Montanan sank. 

The remaining ships of the convoy continued 
toward Bordeaux and coastal points during Saturday, 
Aug. 1 7, the weather remained calm and in the 
morning we met 1 4 more ships and two French des- 
troyers headed south. At midnight a green rocket 
was fired and the Reid's crew were called to general 
quarters by the ringing of the gong. When the men 
had assembled on the "top side", Captain Davidson 
addressed them from the head of the forecastle lad- 
der, asserting that somebody had been tampering 
with the torpedo tubes, and telling them that if the 
guilty man were caught, he would be severely dealt 
with. Captain Davidson did not attempt to conceal 
his anger, and punctuated his remarks with a sea-go- 
ing profanity which the occasion seemed amply to 
justify. "I suspect two men," declared Captain Da- 
vidson, "and if I can prove it on them I will make it 
hot for them." 

The crew remained silent and after they had been 
dismissed gathered in little groups to discuss the 
happening, or sidled up to the gunner's mates to get 
all the dope on just what had been done. Grad- 
ually they climbed down the compartment ladders 
and went to sleep. 


The Base at Brest 

It had been reported that on a previous occasion 
a similar act had been attempted and told by the 
gunners to the wardroom, and that a depth charge 
had also been tampered with so that it would ex- 
plode at a depth of 40 feet, so close to the ship that 
our 32 depth charges would probably have gone off 
at the same time. Considering that the chief petty 
officers occupied the compartment farthest aft, 
directly under the explosives, their anxiety can well 
be understood, and the "Black Gang" — firemen and 
water-tenders — were just a little farther forward. 
As the gunner's mates explained it, a pin or plug was 
pulled out of a part of the mechanism of the torpe- 
does, either with the idea of making the torpedoes 
fail to explode when shot or to explode prematurely. 
Since we had not shot our torpedoes in more than a 
year and had little idea of using them, that anybody 
should fool with them was quite beyond compre- 
hension. This detail did not concern the crew, how- 
ever; all they asked was to catch the culprit, and the 
last entry in his record would probably have read 
"Lost at sea." Regular watches were put on around 
the torpedo tubes and the depth charges, and the 
officers also kept a close watch. The boatswain's 
mate who was on duty from 8 P. M. to midnight of 
Aug. 1 7 stated that nobody left the forward com- 
partment — quarters of the deck force — at any time 
that would have permitted of fixing the torpedoes, 
and the men aft were equally as positive that none of 
their number was implicated. 

When we reached Brest, the matter was reported 
at the Flag Office, and it was put up to Captain 
Davidson to find out who was guilty. The old navy 
game of "sweating the crew" was resorted to, — the 
men were ordered out of this uniform and into that 
in double quick time, then back into the original 


70,000 Miles cn a Submarine Destroyer 

uniform; the deck force were kept busy legging it 
around deck; messengers were sent on queer er- 
rands; attempts were made to shake up the crew by 
a rearrangement of bunks; the "Up all hands!" call 
was sounded an hour earlier each morning; the yeo- 
men were put to work on paper jobs at sea, and 
using a typewriter was a bit of jugglery that the 
land lubber would have enjoyed could he have seen 
it. All of which so confused the Knights of the 
Dungarees that they could only wail, "My Gawd, 
what's comin* next?" 

"Everybody and the ship's cook" were hauled out 
to coal ship, and after they had finished and had 
taken their places in line with buckets for baths in 
the wash room, the chief petty officers stood nearby 
like eagles and sought to pick out the offender. A 
situation was presented which reminded our sailors 
who had volunteered from civil life of a ballroom 
or party scene in which a lady had lost a diamond 
pendant, and every person present felt uncomfort- 
able, to say the least, not even excepting host and 
hostess. So the crew grinned and bore it. 

"Carry on, mates;" yelled a bo' sun; "it all goes 
to make the world safe for democracy!" 

"Where do the Republicans come in?" shouted 
one of them. 

By this time nearly half the crew had gone "dip- 
py" and the "padded cells" were pretty well filled. 

"Lock this nut in Padded Cell No. 23!" yelled 
a coxswain to our compartment policeman, as our 
lamp-lighter came raving down the ladder. And 
pointing to a wild-eyed little man who was dancing 
a jig and singing mournfully over by the starboard 
chow table, he ordered, 


The Base at Brest 

"Shove that bug in No. 24, and be sure not to put 
'em together!" 

Officers and men disguised as detectives came 
aboard to ferret out the mystery, but the way they 
balled up the evidence (granting there was any) led 
our Jack-of-the-Dust to remark that the whole bunch 
could not follow the course of a bull through a china 
shop or a broken-legged elephant in broad daylight 
through a swamp. The disciples of "Hemlock 
Jones " soon passed on to warmer trails and the inci- 
dent was all but forgotten. The gunner's mate in 
charge and several of the crew expressed the opin- 
ion that a certain sailor transferred off the vessel be- 
fore we left Brest for Charleston might have been 
the offender, and that thereafter we would have no 
more Bolsheviki or ferret pests to haunt the crew. 

For a year there was very little thievery aboard, 
the sum total being one large theft and a few francs 
lost here and there, yet on reaching home the men 
and the officers began to miss money. The lockers 
of the righteous and the unrighteous alike were 
searched, and on failing to find anything it was an- 
nounced on deck that "nobody was suspected in 
preference to anybody else." "Old navy" sailors 
confined their insinuations to the statement that it 
was well known numerous "new navy" gobs were 
going back to civilian life and would need capital to 
start business again. 

Such irregularities were exceptional. The average 
sailor is entirely above them, but was often the in- 
nocent victim of them. And so with civilian volun- 

There were a lot of civilians who went into the 
navy without asking for anything more than an op- 
portunity to serve, and certainly seeking advance- 
ment and exercising the meal ticket privilege only 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

incidentally. They enlisted in the lowest ratings 
available, although in many cases they had held 
positions on the outside which would entitle them to 
use the average inexperienced young naval officer as 
a messenger boy, and perhaps lose money at that. 
It was not necessarily galling to execute orders issued 
by these youngsters when it was considered that such 
orders usually expressed the wisdom of persons of 
mature judgment and experience with human nature; 
it was also considered part of the game not to show 
impatience with an occasional young officer who did 
not know enough to drive geese. The civilian real- 
ized that he had not had the opportunity of the ex- 
ceptional education enjoyed by the Annapolis men, 
nor yet the experience at sea through which the older 
officers had passed. Although he had been rub- 
bing elbows with his fellows in civil life, in some 
cases ten years, he did not feel competent to take 
charge of experienced sailors and try to tell them 
how to sail. 

The civilian found himself going through "kinder- 
garten," as it were, in his efforts to fit into the sea- 
going game. All the casual tortures he could stand 
in the name of winning the war, for he had been 
through physical suffering before. What he could 
not stomach was the impression that some officers 
(not all, by any means) gave him of their own supe- 
riority. The "gob" from civil life was foredoomed 
to a sort of military serfdom from which he had little 
chance to free himself. He might have received a 
commission by waiting a year at home and have been 
taken in full communion and fellowship into the 
charmed inner circle of officers, instead of jumping 
in head-first so he might go across with the initial 
contingents. But on donning the uniform of an or- 
dinary sailor he put himself in a category from which 


The Base at Brest 

he had about one chance in a hundred to emerge. 
Lifting himself by bootstraps was what every "gob" 
did who got a commission by virtue of a cruise on 
the ocean blue. In many cases he preferred to re- 
main a "gob" and finish his job with his shipmates, 
rather than pay the awful price necessary to become 
an officer from below decks. 

The theory on which our participation in the war 
was based held that a partnership was being formed 
in which all of the participants were to share, not 
that certain individuals were to arrogate to them- 
selves all the omniscience, omnipotence and omni- 
presence that could be got together. Wise indeed 
was the officer who rejected the attitude which said 
"To hell with you, Jack, — I got mine!" and who 
realized that after the war we should all have to 
live together as before. 

On the whole, the civilian did remarkably well. 
His performance compared very favorably with any- 
thing the old sailormen accomplished, in spite of 
the evident handicaps. This was particularly true 
in the Covington affair, which will long be recalled 
with pride by the "New Navy" men who lived up to 
the traditions of real seamanship. 

Yacht crews especially can claim credit for good 
records, since they were made up largely of college 
students and graduates of considerable experience on 
the "outside", — bankers, salesmen, lawyers and oth- 
ers. A reserve force man from a yacht at Brest, 29 
years old, graduate of a college larger and older than 
Annapolis, and engaged on the outside in an impor- 
tant manufacturing industry, put in his application 
for examination for a commission. He had enlisted 
about May, 1917, and had served perhaps a year in 
the hardest trick of the anti-submarine game. The 
examination board asked him to name three rivers 
in China. He couldn't have named three in New 


70,0 00 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Jersey, hence was knocked cold. This man was far 
above the average in intelligence, education, leader- 
ship of men and other personal qualifications, yet 
he happened not to be on the "inside" and he never 
did get in. "You would not make a good officer,** 
ruled the committee in effect. "You couldn't steer 
a ship into Pekin, and besides, you are too fat!" 

But hark to the civilians' savior! Whatever may 
be said of his ambition to be president, whether of 
the United States or Haiti, civilians of all degrees 
have him to thank for most of the consideration they 
received. At the outset Mr. Daniels issued an order 
to commanding officers calling attention to the fact 
that a large number of exceptional laymen were 
coming into the war to help the men whom the tax- 
payers paid to fight, and suggesting that it would be 
unwise to treat them like children, or words of 
similar purport. This was construed in an attack 
upon the Secretary to mean that favoritism was to 
be shown the sons of the rich, but the inference was 
unjust. And sailors generally, while they believed 
the credit for planning success in the fight against 
submarines should go mostly to the Bureau of Navi- 
gation, the admirals on the ground and their staffs, 
gave Secretary Daniels credit for accomplishing 
more democratic reforms than any man who has 
occupied his chair. He broke down the tradition 
that nobody but the appointees of congressmen 
should enjoy the opportunities of the naval academy 
by arranging that 1 00 men from civil life might enter 
each year on passing entrance examinations. He 
very sensibly issued an order recently allowing offi- 
cers to reduce their wardrobes, including, if memory 
serves, the highly-ornamental spangles and gold 
cord that on occasion bedeck them. This reform 
should do something toward lowering the cost of 
living for officers; for that matter, the officer is in 


The Base at Brest 

much better shape than the fireman who endures the 
tortures of hell on a small craft at sea for $46.50 per 
month and his board ; and the firemen and the other 
ratings, too, should be raised before anybody else. 
The 1 % war increase, now made permanent, will 
not attract many from the outside. Our Irish copper- 
smith on the Reid used to say that another reform 
contemplated by Secretary Daniels was to put a com- 
missioned officer at the head of every mess table 
aboard ship, to ask the blessing, elevate the tone of 
the conversation and see that the gobs did not eat 
peas with their knives or bombard each other with 
pie crusts. It will be an ideal outfit when gobs po- 
litely say, "Mate, will you please have the goodness 
to pass me the spuds?" 

With similar planks in his platform, Mr. Daniels 
could count on a good many votes, although he 
might suffer defections among Annapolis graduates 
and he might not even win back the knitting prodi- 
gies of the Navy League. 

Wherefore, our remarks are meant to apply only 
to those officers and gobs who happen to be in- 
cluded in the facts. There were too many good sail- 
ors who sensed the spirit of the times and conducted 
themselves accordingly, despite the immutable cus- 
toms of this aged institution; these good sailors have 
qualified for the support of their crews and the folks 
at home, and they will be the daredevil leaders of 
the future, whose exploits will call for our cheers 
and whom it will always be a pleasure to honor and 
to respect. And so we revert fondly to ours and 
leave theirs to them. 

"Uncle Sam" can always count on his sailor neph- 
ews to lend him a hand in his emergencies, to help 
him protect life and property from all enemies as 
guaranteed under the Constitution, provided his 
delegated leadership becomes more courageous and 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

less compromising on principles than it has always 
been. "Jack" has learned the lesson of sacrifice 
and still awaits opportunities to prove his mettle. 

The biggest events in the life and experience of 
the Reid during the war were the attack on the U-48 
March 18, 1918, about 40 miles west of Brest, and 
the sinking of the Transport Covington on July 2, 
1918, about 150 miles west of our base. These 
features are fully covered in illustrated chapters 
which follow. For additional accounts in chrono- 
logical order, covering the Reid's adventures in gen- 
eral, her visit to Portugal as the result of the most 
severe storm the Bay of Biscay had seen for years, 
and her return home to Charleston via the Azores 
and Bermuda, the reader is invited to wade into 

'Barnacles' from the Log." 


Chapter IV. 

HNEW chapter has been added to the contro- 
versy over credit for the internment at Ferrol, 
Spain, of the German Submarine U-48. On 
April 27, 1919, the Director of Naval In- 
telligence of the British Admiralty wrote us claim- 
ing credit for H. M. S. Loyal, asserting that on March 
20, 1918, off the Isle of Wight, this vessel attacked 
"Pen-March Pete," as the villainous, underhanded 
renegade of a submarine commander was familiarly 
known along the French Coast. The director's let- 
ter is reproduced elsewhere herein, and contains the 
only official statement we have been able to obtain 
from our friends along the Thames. 

Since the Reid was awarded a star for the exploit, 
then deprived of it, and the Yacht Isabel is said to 
have hung a picture of the U-boat in her wardroom 
labeled "Our Submarine," the controversy waxes in- 
teresting, to say the least. Just what the authorities 
are doing to clear up the matter is problematical and 
causes the maritime world to hold its breath. 

Although the Reid's star is down and dimmed, it 
reposes merely behind the clouds or below the hori- 
zon. It has been stored carefully in the engineer 
storeroom back aft, beneath the chief petty officers' 
compartment, where a curlew captured at sea used 
to hop about and a New Navy chief machinist's 
mate slept on the way home from France because 
there wasn't room for him one deck above. This is 
a buoyant and resilient star, and stars slammed to 
deck will rise again, — maybe! At any rate, picture 
of the star as it graced the Reid's stack is presented 
elsewhere for whatever it may be worth as symbol 
or hunk of tin. 



The Director of Naval Intelligence 
presents his compliments to Mr. G.M. Battey, 
Jnr. and begs to inform him that the German 
submarine U.C.48, subsequently interned at 
Ferrol, Spain, was damaged by depth charges 
dropped Jiy H. M.S. "LOYAL", off the Isle of 
Wight on 20th March, 1918. 

Naval Staff. 

Intelligence Division, 
27th April, 1919, 



Attack on a Submarine 

But to the yarn : On March 1 6, 1 9 1 8, at 4 P. 
M. the Reid, Isabel, Warrington and Flusser left 
Brest convoying westward the Seattle (which had 
just brought Secretary of War Baker to France) 
and the President Grant and the Rappahannock. 
The convoy soon separated, the Warrington and 
Flusser taking the Seattle southeast and the Isabel 
and Reid remaining with the President Grant and the 
Rappahannock. At noon on March 1 7, (Sunday, 
St. Patrick's Day), the Reid and the Isabel left the 
two vessels and went toward rendezvous to join an 
eastbound New York convoy. The weather was 
rough, the Reid had turbine trouble and "lay to" 
40 minutes. At 3 :45 P. M. sighted convoy and ex- 
changed signals with the Scout Cruiser Chester, 
which had accompanied convoy from the United 
States. At 9 P. M. left this convoy and hit up 18.5 
knots for Brest, Isabel accompanying as senior. 

Monday, March 18, 1918, dawned clear and pret- 
ty; sea smooth and there was a light breeze from out 
of the south. At 8:30 A. M. passed the British 
Tramp Steamer Roath, steaming alone. At 10:54 
A. M. Captain Slayton sighted a submarine from his 
position on the bridge. He yanked the annunciator 
handle backward, then forward, signalling the en- 
gine room for full speed, which happened to be 
about 25 knots on three boilers; he ordered course 
changed so as to put the submarine from broad on 
starboard bow to two points on port bow. Then 
he pressed the button that called all hands to general 

This was the first submarine we had sighted defi- 
nitely and positively in nearly eight months of steam- 
ing in the submarine zones, and everybody piled out 
eagerly from below and rushed to their posts. Lieu- 
tenant Davidson, executive officer, began to prance 
back and forth on the bridge like a tiger. Ensign 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Wilson kicked a seaman from the chart-house to the 
forecastle gun. Berry, ship's cook, upset a hot pot 
of bean soup in the galley. Lieutenant Good perch- 
ed on the after deck house and directed operations 
at No. 3 gun. Everybody got busy. The Reid was 
slashing through the water like a sturgeon, kicking 
up a frothy wake that betokened business, and 
belching out a heavy smoke from the stacks that was 
left quickly behind as the ship leaped forward on her 
thrilling mission. Near the horizon dead ahead a 
column of black smoke curled upward ; it came from 
a small French tramp steamer which the submarine 
was evidently trailing to sink with shell-fire. The 
tramp slapped on an extra knot until he must have 
been making eight, and plugged along in his own 
peculiar way. Signal had been sent to the Isabel, 
which held position on our port quarter, not less 
than a mile distant, and the Isabel was likewise mak- 
ing smoke and knots, and skimming proudly over the 
glassy sea with her bow high. On putting on extra 
speed, the Reid tooted her whistle six times, which 
was the accepted way of spreading a submarine 
warning of this kind. Whether the U-boat com- 
mander heard this whistle is uncertain. He was dis- 
tant about four miles when sighted. His wireless 
masts, conning tower, dark mass and a grim figure 
or two on deck could be seen plainly; then after the 
Reid and the Isabel had covered about a mile he 
folded his wireless masts over to the side (like a sail- 
boat capsizing), and submerged in two minutes. 

This brought a gasp of disappointment from the 
expectant watchers. Fire from our guns had been 
withheld hoping to get into better position for plac- 
ing depth charges, and this was regarded as the wise 
thing to do, since shells could only have scared him 
and even in the event of a hit would probably have 
punctured his superstructure without sinking him. 




On March 18, 1918, 40 miles west of Brest, France, the 
Reid fired three depth charges at a German submarine. 
Details are told in the accompanying chapter. 




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After dropping two depth charges, the Reid swum 

around to port and let go a third 
only six "ash cans" aboard, and 

I'n fortunately, we had 
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The attack on "Pen-March Pete," in which "Heinie" 
Good's division manned the after deck house and No. 3 
gun. Fire was withheld, hoping for better position. 


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The Reid was a home while Chas. C, Slavton com- 
manded it, and the crew gave him the customary send- 
off when he went on May 26, 1918, to the Wadsworth. 

I ' 


The illustration shows the star awarded the Reid for 
damaging the U-48 on March 18, 1918. The Yacht Isa- 
bel and H. M. S. Loval also claimed the credit. 

Howard H. Good, of Warren, End., who did his duty as 
an officer and also knew how to handle men. We gave 
him three rousing cheers when he left for the States. 

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Here is our destroyer, mates, in one of the few snaps 
obtainable of her underway. Taken by J. A. Chappell, 
CMM., U. S. S. Flusser, between the Azores and Ber- 
muda, Christmas Eve, 1918. 


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Lettuce and potato clips, taken in tie open air, are 
prescribed for officers who feel "uncomfortable"' at sea. 
This sailor soon went to a larger ship. 

Attack on a Submarine 

Captain Slayton had changed course to avoid steam- 
ing between the sun and the submarine, where the 
Reid would have been more pronouncedly outlined 
against the sky. 

On arriving near the spot of submergence one 
depth charge was exploded. The second was fired 
over the spot of submergence, and the third on a 
perceptible oil slick, intended to follow up his course 
ahead. The Isabel dropped one depth charge and 
signalled over to ask the Reid what things looked 
like. After hunting for an hour without seeing any- 
thing further, at 1 :03 P. M. the Reid and Isabel put 
on 20 knots for Brest, arriving at 3:40 P. M., and 
two hours later the French tramp puffed in. The 
position where the submarine was attacked was 
47-58 N., 05-34 W., off Ar Men Light and approxi- 
mately 40 miles west from Brest. 

We thought little more about the incident until 
March 25. While we were coaling ship on that day, 
Captain Slayton had the following French newspaper 
clipping posted on the bulletin board: 

A German Submarine Damaged at the End of a Com- 
bat Seeks Refuge at Ferrol. A 400-ton submarine has 

entered the port of Ferrol, Spain (on March 24). A 
Spanish war vessel was sent to meet it. The subma- 
rine carried two 1 1 -centimenter (4-inch) guns. The 
Captain asked entrance to the port for reasons of ur- 
gency, the submarine being badly damaged after a com- 
bat which he had with three war vessels. The crew 
consisted of 30 men. 

A report made to the authorities on reaching port 
after the incident contained the following: 

1. At 10:54 A. M., 18 March, in company with U. 
S. S. Isabel, in Lat. 47-58 N, Long. 05-34 W, a subma- 
rine was sighted bearing about 130 degrees true. 
While looking at a column of smoke in that direction a 
black object like a heavy spar was seen about four 
miles distant. Signal was made to the Isabel, went 
full speed and went to general quarters. Course was 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

altered so as to bring object about two points on port 
bow. Shortly after changing course, the broadside sil- 
houette of a submarine with two radio masts was seen. 
Fire was withheld, hoping to get closer. 

2. The submarine apparently saw the Reid, quickly 
housed her masts and at 11:01 submerged. Judging 
the distance to be about 3.5 miles at time of submerg- 
ing, a depth charge was dropped about 600 yards to 
the south of point of submergence, at 11:12. Seeing 
a noticeable oil slick, two more charges were dropped, 
one about 1 00 yards to windward, and one exactly on 
the slick. The slick was about 300 yards long and 50 
yards broad. 

3. The Isabel also dropped a depth charge in the 
vicinity, and both vessels cruised about for an hour 
and then continued the original course on orders from 
the Isabel. 

4. It is believed the submarine had just come to the 
surface when sighted, steering about east, perhaps to- 
ward the smoke in that direction. He then changed 
course to about south, when the radio masts were 
plainly seen. The appearance was somewhat like the 
plates of the U-53 (which put into Newport in the fall 
of 1916 and on leaving for base sank several merchant 
vessels), but the conning tower seemed higher, its 
height being apparently greater than its length. 

The following entries were made in the deck log 
by our executive officer : 

Headed for submarine at full speed and went to 
general quarters. Upon our approach and when dis- 
tant about three miles, submarine housed wireless masts, 
same having been unshipped toward side, giving ap- 
pearance of sail-boat capsizing. Within two minutes 
submarine was completely submerged. Although all 
guns were manned, fire was withheld in the hope of 
gaining better position, submarine being in direction 
of sun, and also to obtain submarine's correct position 
for use of depth charges after submergence. At 11:10 
dropped depth charge near spot where submarine was 
last seen; at 11:12 dropped second depth charge; at 
1 1 :15 dropped third depth charge. Third depth bomb 
was dropped and detonated exactly in distinct slick in 
water about 300 yards long by 50 yards wide. Pa- 
trolled vicinity in hope that enemy would again show 


Attack on a Submarine 

himself; holding guns, torpedoes and depth bombs ready 
for action. No further trace was seen of the enemy. 
At 1 :03 secured from general quarters and came back 
to course; standard speed, 20.5 knots. At 1 :40 sighted 
lighthouse ahead and at 3:40 stood into Brest harbor 
and moored. At 4 French pilot reported aboard for 
duty. At 5 sent liberty party ashore. At 7:10 coal 
lighter came alongside and was secured. At 9 liberty 
party returned; no absentees. 

On March 26 the Paris Edition of the New York 
Herald stated that two reasons were given why the 
submarine entered the port. The first was as stated 
above, the second that the U-boat had torn a hole in 
her hull by hitting rocks in the channel. The sec- 
ond explanation, following the first news by at least 
24 hours, was thought on our vessel to have been 
made with the idea of pleasing the Germano-Spanish 
political faction. The Herald account follows: 
Madrid, March 25. — The submarine which took ref- 
uge at Ferrol yesterday on account of her damaged 
condition is the U-Boat 48, of 400 tons. On her en- 
try into port the submarine was deprived of her pro- 
pellers and her war material, and placed under the 
close supervision of several torpedo boat destroyers. 
It is stated that the crew of 30 will be interned at Al- 
cala-de-Henares. Telegrams from Ferrol give differ- 
ent explanations of the reason which compelled the sub- 
marine to seek refuge. One dispatch speaks of dam- 
age inflicted on the submersible in the course of a fight 
with several of the Allies' ships. Another reproduces 
a statement by the commander according to which the 
damage consisted of a leak caused by impact with a 
rock in the course of a plunge in the Channel. 
The Liberal, commenting on the incident, says: 
Aggressions against our merchant ships multiply. 
Not only is it a case of ships which penetrate in the 
war zone, and of those which transport articles which 
Germany has arbitrarily declared contraband, but they 
torpedo our ships carrying inoffensive national prod- 
ucts, and those whiqh navigate on the coast. They 
attack and stop boats engaged in the Canary Isles serv- 
ice and those which go to America. They wish evi- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

dently to deprive us of all relations with that country 
and ruin our commerce. And those who create such a 
prospect for us come with the greatest coolness to seek 
asylum in our ports when they find themselves in dif- 
ficulty, and we have the weakness to receive them 
and to forget all. Havas. 

On April 8 our captain had the following notice 
posted on the bulletin board : 

Admiral Wilson reported to Admiral Sims concern- 
ing the probability of the U-48 interned in Spain as the 
one we attacked off Ar Men. Later, Admiral Sims ca- 
bled here that his contention was apparently confirmed. 
Advices from Spain are that the submarine had a bad 
hole or dent in her side. 

Under the heading "U-Boat's Escape Stopped," 
the London Daily Mail of May 22, 1918, carried the 
following squib : 

Madrid, Tuesday. A message from Corunna says 

* that the German submarine U-48, interned at Ferrol, 
tried to escape last night. It was prevented by a Span- 
ish destroyer. — Radio. 

On September 21, 1 9 1 8, at Brest, Thos N. Kurtz, 
Chief of Staff to Admiral Wilson, Commander of the 
United States Naval Forces in France, wrote the 
commanding officer of the Reid the following letter: 
You are authorized to paint a white star on the for- 
ward smokestack of the U. S. S. Reid as indicating the 
action of that vessel on March 18, 1918, with an enemy 
submarine, as a consequence of which the submarine 
was put out of action. 

It is unnecessary to state that the star was hung 
up quickly. The best previous time to hang a star 
on a smokestack had been 45 minutes (by the 
Tucker, also at Brest), but Clarence M. Stanley, a 
fireman and the man behind the paint brush, clipped 
1 5 minutes from this record. On November 5 
(just six days before the armistice, by the way), 
Mr. Osgood, the executive officer, passed the word 


Attack on a Submarine 

informally that since British patrol boats had claimed 
to have attacked the U-48 after the Reid's attack, 
the star would come down. Stanley accordingly 
daubed on a smudge of black paint much quicker 
than he had fashioned the star in white. There was 
no objection on the part of the crew to placing the 
credit where it belonged, but the question was raised 
whether after granting the star it might not have been 
just as well to have let it remain, especially since 
no satisfactory evidence was presented the men as 
to the validity of rival claims. 

On Friday night, March 14, 1919, while the Reid 
and the Isabel were lying in reserve at the Philadel- 
phia Navy Yard, the dare-devil "Pen-March Pete" 
again tried to escape from Ferrol, and newspapers 
carried the following accounts: 

Madrid. Details of a desperate attempt by the Ger- 
man submarine U-48 to escape from the harbor of 
Ferrol, only to be pursued and sunk by a destroyer Fri- 
day night, March 14, 1919, were made known in dis- 
patches today. The crew of 30 and her commander 
were saved. The attempt of the U-boat to escape after 
being tied up more than a year was characterized by 
officials as a "bold, defiant act." It is not known just 
what action will be taken against the captain of the 
undersea boat. 

Picking out a time when only one warship was sta- 
tioned over her, the U-boat quickly slipped anchor and 
in the guise of a Spanish submarine slowly proceeded 
down the harbor. The attempt was immediately no- 
ticed by the crew of the destroyer which was stationed 
to guard her. The captain of the destroyer immedi- 
ately ordered full steam and the chase began. Several 
shots were fired at the U-boat. It was not stated to- 
day whether the U-boat was sunk by gunfire or was 
rammed by the destroyer. It is believed, however, that 
she was sunk by shellfire, as there would have been lit- 
tle chance for the crew to escape had she been rammed. 
The crew was brought back to Ferrol under heavy 
guard and the authorities notified. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

An investigation has been ordered and it is likely that 
the U-boat will be raised to the surface for examina- 
tion. Naval officers evinced surprise as to how the 
craft succeeded in getting under way, as she had been 
stripped of her propellers when she first came to this 
port. The boat had been carefully guarded since. Be- 
fore fleeing into Ferrol for safety from a number of 
destroyers which were chasing her, the U-48 caused 
many sensations. In 1917 she was reported off Ber- 
muda, and sank many merchant vessels. 

London (By U. P.). — The crew of the German sub- 
marine U-48 sank their undersea vessel just as a Span- 
ish destroyer was about to recapture it after an attempt 
to escape from the Bay of Betanzos, according to an Ex- 
change Telegraph dispatch today. The submarine was 
interned in the bay, was to be handed over to the Al- 
lies under the terms of the armistice. Spanish au- 
thorities at Ferrol had ordered the submarine crew to 
prepare their vessel to be turned over, but rather than 
do this the Germans decided to make an attempt to es- 
cape. A Spanish destroyer sighted the periscope leav- 
ing the bay and gave chase. The Germans made a run- 
ning fight, but as the destroyer gained on them an ex- 
plosion occurred and the submarine was seen to go 
down, end up. All members of the crew are believed 
to have perished. 

Paris, March 15. — The German submarine U-48, 
while attempting to escape from Ferrol, Spain, last 
night, was chased by a destroyer and sunk, according to 
a Havas dispatch from Madrid. The U-48 took ref- 
uge at Ferrol in March, 1918, and was interned. The 
attempted flight of the U-boat was observed and the 
torpedo boat destroyer Antalo pursued her. The Ger- 
man boat was sunk outside the Ferrol roads. The crew 
was saved. 

When the German submarine U-48 sought refuge 
at Ferrol, her propellers were unshipped by the authori- 
ties and her guns and munitions were taken out, ac- 
cording to dispatches from that port. The captain of 
the submarine stated that his craft had been damaged 
severely in a fight with three ships. The U-boat car- 
ried a crew of 30 men and for a time a Spanish war- 
ship stood guard over her. In 1917 the U-48 was re- 
ported off Bermuda. 


Attack on a Submarine 

London, May 9. The captain of a German subma- 
rine arrived in London from Spain today and was placed 
in the Tower. The Star understands that he was the 
commander of a U-boat which sank several hospital 

Paris, March 20. — The small French naval vessel 
Samson has taken charge of the German submarine 
U-39, a telegram from Cartagena, Spain, says. An- 
other small French vessel has taken charge of the guns 
and other war material of the German submarines U-48 
and U-23 at Ferrol, Spain. Divers have examined the 
U-48, which was sunk last Friday night, March 14, 
1919, by a Spanish destroyer while trying to escape 
from Ferrol, and believe that the boat can be salvaged 
if the weather remains favorable. 

In the absence of proof that H. M. S. Loyal dam- 
aged the U-48, it is permissible, perhaps, to specu- 
late on some of the probabilities and the possibilities. 
Would a submarine badly damaged off the Isle of 
Wight, southern coast of England, risk the time and 
the elements, not to mention the American destroy- 
ers, by traveling 600 miles to Ferrol, Spain, or would 
he hike 200 miles through the Strait of Dover to his 
base at Ostend, defying the English destroyers and 
the dangers of a narrower body of water? 

If damaged off Brest, would he steam 343 miles 
to Ostend or 35 7 miles to Ferrol? In any event, he 
undoubtedly lay to a day or so making repairs, so 
the time elements would be confusing. If attacked 
by the Loyal on March 20, he had four days to make 
Ferrol. Taking off a day for lying to, would give 
three steaming days, and steaming at nine miles an 
hour on the surface all the time, he could have made 
it; but this old type submarine could do only ten 
miles on the surface under the best conditions, and 
it is improbable that with a bad hole in his side and 
delicate mechanisms shaken up by depth charges he 
could have negotiated the distance in the specified 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

time. It is more likely that he lay to a day or two 
and covered 35 7 miles from off Brest to Ferrol in 
four or five days, limping along the surface at night 
and steaming mostly submerged in daylight. A 
storm, possibly, swept him out of his course. 

There is one person who can settle the matter 
when he gets out of limbo, and his name is "Pen- 
March Pete." 

Since the above account was written and just as 
we are ready to go to press, we have received ad- 
ditional information through official sources direct 
from the Commander of the U-48. This informa- 
tion will undoubtedly be used to clear up the con- 
troversy. The U-Boat Commander made a state- 
ment to a Spaniard of German sympathies shortly 
after the arrival at Ferrol, and the Spaniard confided 
in a British official, who informed the American au- 
thorities. Following is the account attributed to the 
Commander of the U-48: 

Just a few days before our putting into Ferrol with 
damages to our U-Boat's hull, we entered the French 
port of Cherbourg, following up the waters of a French 
submarine, owing to which manoeuvre we were able to 
get through the fields of mines successfully. Once in, 
we placed there in the bay ourselves various mines. 
Afterwards we went out again to the English Channel, 
where we remained submerged at a depth of 80 me- 
ters (260 feet) till dark, when we came to the surface. 
We then saw a convoy at some distance and which we 
followed up immediately, but we had scarcely reached 
the named convoy when a destroyer, the nationality of 
which we could not ascertain (she was either British or 
American, but not French), faced us. We then sub- 
merged at once our U-Boat at a depth of 30 meters 
(97 feet) and a few seconds later we felt the conse- 
quence of an explosion of a depth charge quite close 
to us and which doubtless had been fired by the de- 
stroyer above named. This happened near Cape 



Attack on a Submarine 

The explosion named above unseamed several of our 
U-Boat's plates and which caused a great leakage, so 
much so that it took us six hours to be able to come 
to the surface once more. When on the surface we 
had to make for the nearest port available to us, and 
which was Ferrol. 

A point touching the Reid's claim is that we at- 
tacked our submarine before noon, whereas the U-48 
commander is reported to have stated that he was 
attacked after dark. Therefore, unless "Pen-March 
Pete" was lying or the Spaniard mistaken, this would 
seem to give other claimants the advantage. Either 
is entirely possible in view of the hazy atmospheres 
surrounding any statement of occurrences from 
Spain. We are inclined to believe one or the other 
was not just what he ought to be; that it is very un- 
likely such a cunning and slippery person as "Pen- 
March Pete" would allow himself to be seen by a 
destroyer at night; and that could our British friends 
establish the presence of three ships as it is com- 
monly accepted were present when "Pete" came to 
the top, they would meet the request that they do 
so along with putting in a claim for H. M. S. Loyal. 
Finally, one naturally couples the statement that 
"Pete" dived 30 metres (97 feet) with the fact 
that the Reid's "ash cans" were set to explode (and 
exploded) at 80 feet; and this much is certainly true, 
that since the explosion affected "Pete's" plates in 
such unseemly fashion, it must also have knocked 
his jaw teeth loose. Quod erat demonstrandum! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

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Chapter V. 

T 1 1 o'clock on the morning of Monday, July 
1, 1918, the Destroyers Little (flagship), 
Reid, Conner, Porter, Cummings, Jarvis and 
Smith left Brest convoying the Transports 
DeKalb (flagship of convoy), the Covington, the 
George Washington, the Dante Alighieri, the Le- 
nape, the Rijndam, the Wilhelmina and the Princess 
Matoika westward toward the United States, these 
vessels having just landed a fresh contingent of 
American troops for the Western Front and having 
lifted anchor to bring more across. The speed was 
not quite fifteen knots, the weather fair and the sea 
calm. The DeKalb was in the center leading the five 
columns and the Covington to port of her and 
abreast as No. 2 from left. The Smith's position was 
port flank and quarter of convoy, the Porter's flank 
and bow, 1 ,000 yards ahead ; the Conner's port bow, 
the Little's 1,500 yards ahead, the Cumminga' 1,000 
yards ahead on starboard bow, the Jarvis' 600-1,000 
yards off the starboard flank, and finally the Reid's 
600-1,000 yards off starboard flank and quarter. 
The DeKalb carried the Reid's book, which it was 
hoped could be published during the war. 

At 5:20 P. M. ships received an "alio" (subma- 
rine warning) from the Flag Office at Brest, as fol- 

"Enemy submarine active Lat. 47-50 N., Long. 
07-50 W. Convoy change course; acknowledge." 

The Little wired Brest: "Verified position subma- 
rine." This was at 7 :30 P. M. 

At 9 : 1 P. M. heard depth charges fired on oppo- 
site side of convoy from Reid, in neighborhood of 
Smith and Porter; also saw flashes from guns. Went 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

to general quarters. Received at 9 : 1 5 P. M. radio 
message saying "Covington torpedoed. Position 
47-24 N., 07-44 W." Little issued instructions to 
steer West until Long. 08-00 W. was reached. Reid 
proceeded with convoy. 

The Little repeated the Covington message to 
Brest. At 9:43 P. M. the Covington commander 
wirelessed the Little: "Covington apparently not 
sinking. Possibly can be towed to Brest." At 
10:40 the Little wired base: "Covington floating 
well. Will leave Smith and Reid with her at 1 1 
tonight. Little will proceed to join convoy." And 
at 10:40 the Little answered the O'Brien: "Yes, 
come and stand by." Then about 1 A. M. on July 
2, the Little wired the Reid, "Join Covington; ex- 

The following messages were exchanged : 

Little to Smith: "Keep Brest informed on situation.'* 

Smith to Shaw and Brest: "Survivors aboard. Stand- 
ing by Covington. When Reid joins, commanding of- 
ficer recommends Smith proceed Brest with survivors, 
Reid remain Covington. Commanding officer standing 

From Brest: "Concord ordered to assistance Cov- 

Smith to Reid at 4:30 a. m. "Commanding officer 
Covington aboard." 

Ships intercepted wireless message saying a French 
sloop had been torpedoed. 

Tug Revenger to Brest: "Covington in tow three 
tugs. Believed none lost. Captain on board Re- 

British warship message (intercepted) said: "Con- 
voy five hours late. Request extra escort in view sub- 
marine activity. Give location 47-50 N., 06-52 W., at 
0302 today Tuesday a wide berth." 

Sixty miles away, the Reid put on all speed and 
joined the Covington at daybreak. Everybody 
was up on deck to see the sight of the helpless ves- 


Sinking of the Covington 

sel as she stood in fairly smooth water leaning over 
sharply to port, her great gray hulk silhouetted 
sharply against the rapidly brightening horizon. 
With a distinct feeling of sadness and of irrepressible 
curiosity the men shifted positions about the deck to 
better their views. The silence was broken for 
those occupying points of vantage on the bridge and 
the searchlight platform when Lieutenant Smith, 
garbed in his trusty buck-skin trousers and saffron 
shirt, bawled out: "Now you men stay on the other 
side of the ship; this is no sight-seeing party." After 
a few minutes the "sight-seers" became curious 
again, and as we dropped depth charges to scare off 
any possible submarines we could still hear Mr. 
Smith shouting, "All right, now, trim ship. Every- 
body keep their eyes open for a submarine!" 

The Smith's deck was thick as blackbirds with 
Covington survivors and she pulled out presently 
for Brest at 20 knots. Due to the unusually heavy 
load her draft had been increased about three feet. 
The British Tugs Woonda and Revenger steamed up ; 
at 7 A. M. the Wadsworth joined, at 7 :30 the Shaw 
and at 8 :50 the Nicholson. The Reid had sent a 
working party of seven men aboard the Covington 
under Ensign John A. Wilson, USNRF., of 
Chicago, to handle lines, and these men remained 
aboard. This proved Ensign Wilson's war opportu- 
nity, and he made the most of it. 

Our men had raised a large new flag aft on the 
Covington, and to the destroyer men and the men 
on the tugs it spoke out a message harking back to 
the time when Washington fought to raise it, and 
Jefferson fought to preserve it, and Roosevelt fought 
again to see it triumph as the symbol of practical pa- 
triotism, of honesty in speech and fair dealing among 
mankind. At first it floated a few feet above the 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

water, then as the Covington began to settle, its tips 
flapped in the brine, and after a while it disappeared 
from sight. 

At 2:32 P. M. Greenwich Mean Time, the Cov- 
ington sank astern, her bow mounting majestically 
in the air as if to split a bank of low-lying cumulus 
clouds. Her last remaining bulkheads gave way un- 
der the terrific pressure and small boats and a mass 
of debris hurtled from forward toward aft along the 
slanting deck; her bridge was smashed into an egg- 
shell with a sickening noise of creaking, twisting, 
groaning timbers; her great stacks collapsed like 
celluloid; her huge lines made fast to the tugs snap- 
ped sharply back to the ship in spirals as the axes 
were laid on; and a cloud of brown dust arose 
above the wreck just before she disappeared. When 
the water closed about her there was left on thti sur- 
face a great confusion of small things that go to make 
up a ship's deck equipment. A French sloop tow- 
ing four of the Covington life boats put off a punt 
with a sailor who went pecking through the wreck- 
age to see what he could see. The Frenchman 
perched himself for a moment on a raft; the destroy- 
ers got their orders and steamed for their European 

The final plunge of the Covington was wonderful 
as the crumbling of a mountain might be; it was ter- 
rible and sad as the passing of a life-long friend. It 
was a sight to see once, but never again. 

Capt. Hasbrouck was roundly criticized for not 
staying on board his vessel, and Capt. Davidson for 
allowing the Nicholson to take the Reid's party off 
the Covington when we could have done it ourselves. 

Ensign Wilson made the following report : 

Shoved off from U. S. S. Reid in whaleboat at 4:20 A. 
M., July 2, with detail of G. C. McCabe, CBM, David 


Sinking of the Covington 

T. Sanders, BM- 1 c, J. A. Lynch, MM-2c, W. F. Ander- 
son, GM-2c, David Udolfsky, SeaGnr., J. G. Michalo, 
Sea, and J. A. Robbins, Sea. Boarded the Covington 
via the sea ladder on port bow just abaft the bridge. 

The Covington had a port list of about twelve de- 
grees. Proceeded at once forward and hailed the Brit- 
ish Tugs "Woonda" and "Zulu," which were standing 
by, distant about 1 00 yards on the bow. The sea was 
calm and the weather clear. Found one seaman aboard, 
who said he had been aboard all night. He was evi- 
dently slightly dazed. Immediately made arrangements 
to get on board two wire hawsers from the "Zulu" 
and "Woonda." After about one hour's work, succeed- 
ed in securing both to forward bitts. The "Woonda" 
to port and "Zulu" to starboard. 

(Note — The Tug "Zulu" was better known as the 

While engaged in securing hawsers, the U. S. S. 
Concord came within hail and I at once hailed her and 
directed her to pass us an additional hawser. The 
Captain of the Concord rendered us great assistance 
by his skillful handling of the Concord. The hawser 
which was secured to the Concord was a 1 2-inch manila 
and was secured aboard the Covington to the starboard 
bitts. While the work of securing the hawsers was be- 
ing done, I noticed that no colors were flying, nor 
commission pennant. At once gave orders to have new 
ensign hoisted. Could not find a commission pen- 

At 5:55 A. M. tugs were under way and headed 
on course 72 degrees by steering compass. While the 
lines were being passed to the tugs, a boat with some of 
the Covington's crew, under a lieutenant, came along- 
side and some of them came aboard. They took stores 
from the canteen and the paymaster secured his ac- 
counts, etc. The lieutenant talked a couple of minutes 
with me but I was busy keeping track of the ship. 
Detailed two of my men to help them get their gear to 
the boat. The paymaster got into the boat without 
his valise, containing his money, but Boatswain's Mate 
Sanders, of the Reid, carried it aft and gave it to him. 
The boat^ then shoved off and proceeded to the 

Then being under way and the Reid circling around 
the Covington, I ordered Machinist's Mate Lynch to in- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

spect the engine room, etc. Ordered Chief Boat- 
swain's Mate McCabe to take all his men and secure 
all ports, etc., on port side, which was done, with all 
found open. The Covington then had a list to port of 
1 8 degrees by the chartroom clinometer. I inspected 
the battery and found all the 6-inch guns loaded and 
primed. Had the primers removed and the powder 
bags replaced in the containers. The forecastle and 
poop were both littered with powder containers. 

Ordered breakfast for all hands at 7 A. M. from can- 
teen stores, which the late paymaster of Covington had 
said were available for our use. Upon inspecting found 
a seaman on a raft under the port quarter. Ordered 
him hauled on board. His name was Bryant and he 
stated that he did not know ship had been abandoned, 
and when he discovered no one aft, and saw the de- 
stroyers circling around, he jumped overboard on the 
raft. Further search for possible survivors revealed 
Sprague, seaman, in one of the after crew's spaces. 
He did not know that ship had been abandoned, and 
claimed to have suffered an injury to his back. Had 
him placed in one of the bunks abaft the chart room. 

Examination of the engine room showed water cover- 
ing the tops of the cylinders of starboard engines. 
Sounded and found 27 feet of water in engine room. 
Ordered Machinist's Mate Lynch to inspect the same 
and take soundings every half hour. Read the clinome- 
ter every half hour. The wireless was still buzzing and 
I had it disconnected. The fire rooms were under 
water. The standing lights in the main deck passage 
way were still burning, and continued until 12:45, 
when I made my last inspection of them. They evi- 
dently got their power from the storage batteries 
located abaft the after funnel on the boat deck. All 
the boats on the boat deck abaft No. 2 funnel were 
wrecked by the force of the explosion and the port 
davits just above the spot where the torpedo struck 
were torn from their sockets and lay athwart the deck. 
The speed boat was secured on the starboard side of the 
well (main deck) and was uninjured. There was very 
little water in any compartment forward of the engine 
room, and No. 1 and No. 2 holds were completely 
free and remained so until we abandoned ship. Water 
was found below the berth deck abaft the engine 
rooms, and gained gradually, probably coming 


\bout 9 P. M., July 1, 1918, the Transport Covington 
(formerly the Cincinnati of the Hamburg-American 
Line) was torpedoed, and sank at 2:32 P. M., .Inly 2. 


Ensign John A. ("Jaw") Wilson, a civilian officer, who 
took working party of 7 men on sinking liner and was 
cited for excellent seamanship. 

The whaleboat contained an officer and men who had 
hoarded the ship to get provisions and money. It was 
helped into position so the foragers could return to the 
Tug Woonda. 


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The I 

i sters 

Wm. F. Anderson, gunner's mate, took a leading part 
in the attack on "Pen-March Pete" and the attempt to 
save the Covington, receiving honorable mention. 

Sinking of the Covington 

through the shaft tunnels, which were no doubt started 
by the explosion. It appeared the torpedo hit about 
the position of the bulk-head between the engine room 
and the compartment abaft it, and then flooded both 
compartments immediately. 

At 8:45 A. M. a light breeze from north-northeast 
sprang up. Nicholson hove in sight and joined the 
Reid and the Wadsworth. A French sloop was dis- 
tant about three miles on starboard quarter with four 
of the Covington's boats in tow. Examined the engine 
room at 9 A. M. and found little change in conditions. 
Roll increased to 18 degrees to 20 degrees to port. 
At 1 0:25 list increased to 23 degrees. At 10:30 re- 
ceived signal from Reid "What do you think of her?" 
Signal made in reply: "She is gradually settling astern 
and to port." At 10:45 main deck abaft garbage chute 
on port side was even with the water. 

At once gave orders to have lashing removed from 
speed launch and all the boats on deck so they might 
clear the deck when she sank, since after this time it 
was evident from increasing list that she could not be 
towed into port. At 1 1 o'clock clinometer showed 25- 
degree list to port. At 12 o'clock clinometer showed 
3 1 -degree list to port. Had all hands to mess and after- 
ward made rounds of ship. Found water increasing in 
engine room to 30 feet and after holds filling up. (No. 
2 holds were still free from water). Had all hands 
mustered at starboard rail on boat deck just abaft the 
bridge. At 12:45 again made examination of ship and 
found water gaining and list increasing to 36 degrees. 
At 1 o'clock received signal from Reid: "Abandon 
ship immediately on life rafts and we will pick you up." 
Reid had maintained a position from 400-800 yards 
abaft the Covington's starboard beam. 

At 1:10 Boatswain's Mate Sanders, stationed forward 
co stand by hawsers, reported loud banging coming 
from below decks forward. At once had all hands 
proceed along starboard rail and on account of list of 
40 degrees rigged life lines from starboard rail to for- 
ward hatches and companion ways. Then Seaman 
Gunner Udolfsky and Chief Boatswain's Mate McCabe 
and Boatswain's Mate Sanders and myself went below 
to investigate. Udolfsky and Sanders went down to 
keelson and shouted, but received no reply. Cut away 
the hatch cover of No. 1 hatch and raised the hatch. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Then McCabe, Sanders and Udolfsky went below and 
investigated and shouted as before, but obtained no re- 
plies. I ordered them on deck, as I feared they might 
get caught below if the ship took a sudden list. 

Then all hands stationed themselves along starboard 
rail life lines by two life rafts which were floating in wa- 
ter held by painter, and waited for the approach of the 
boat. Then the Nicholson edged in close on starboard 
bow, lowered a boat and signalled "We will pick you 
up." Meantime, a boat manned by the Covington's 
crew put off from the Tug "Woonda" and pulled 
down toward the Covington on the port side. Shouted 
to her to keep away, as the life rafts and boats sliding 
down to port and coming away made it very dangerous 
to leave via port side. The list was increasing and she 
was gradually settling by the stern. In my judgment 
she was good for an hour yet. Observing that the 
Nicholson's boat would reach about forward of second 
funnel, as we still had way on, ordered all hands to 
pass along the starboard rail and leave via the life lines 
hanging over the side. This was done with some diffi- 
culty owing to the list, and at 1:30 P. M., having seen 
all hands safely down in the Nicholson's boat, I went 
over the side into the boat, which then shoved off and 
pulled to the Nicholson. I estimate that this took 
place about 1 :30. 

I reported to the Commanding Officer of the Nichol- 
son and he directed me to remain aboard in accordance 
with signal from Reid. At 2:32 the Covington sank by 
the stern with colors flying. Upon arrival at Brest that 
night, I reported myself and men to the Officer of the 
Deck of the Panther. 

The conduct of my men from the Reid was excellent, 
and they had the "punch" at all times. I especially 
desire to call your attention to the splendid spirit and 
zeal of Seaman Gunner Udolfsky, Boatswain's Mate 
Sanders and Chief Boatswain's Mate McCabe in going 
down No. 1 hatch and searching that section of the ship 
just before abandoning ship, although the Covington 
was then getting lively. 

Captain R. D. Hasbrouck made the following re- 
port on the sinking of the Covington, as outlined in 
the New York World of Jan. 22, 191 9. The state- 


Sinking of the Covington 

ment that "a salvage party from the Smith boarded 
the Covington" is taken as a reference to the Reid's 
party : 

At night on July I, the lookout on the Covington, 
which had sailed from Brest with several other trans- 
ports escorted by destroyers, saw a streak of white 300 
yards from the port quarter. The torpedo struck 
with terrific detonation, throwing a column of water 
above the stacks. In an incredibly short time the 
crew were at their stations awaiting orders from the 

Engine and fire rooms filled quickly. In fifteen 
minutes the ship lay dead in the water and listed to 
port. "Abandon ship" was bugled. The behavior of 
officers and men was wonderful. 

Twenty-one of the twenty-seven lifeboats were low- 
ered without lights to guide, with the ship listing badly 
and without the aid of a single winch, for steam had 
failed. It was a stirring sight to see the men go down 
the ladders as though in drill. The Destroyer Smith 
took the men aboard. 

A working party of thirty officers and men remain- 
ed on the Covington, collecting records, charts, sex- 
tants, etc. At 4 A. M. a salvage party from the Smith 
boarded the Covington. The Smith headed for Brest 
full speed at 5:20 A. M. Two British tugs and an 
American tug came up. By 6 o'clock the tugs had the 
Covington in tow, making five knots. Two more de- 
stroyers, in addition to the Reid, which had been 
standing by, joined shortly after. 

At 2:10 the salvage party was taken off; at 2:30 the 
Covington began to sink rapidly by the stern. 

Captain Davidson reported as follows: 

At 9:15 P. M, July I, 1918, proceeding on right 
flank of convoy, heard explosion of depth charges and 
noticed gunfire by escort on opposite flank. Went to 
general quarters. At 9:18 P. M., U. S. S. Coving- 
ton was reported torpedoed. Convoy changed course 
to about 300 degrees true. Reed continued in as- 
signed position protecting right flank. 

At 1 :20 A. M., July 2, in obedience to orders from 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

U. S. S. Little, Escort Commander, proceeded at full 
speed to join U. S. S. Covington. Sighted Covington 
at 3:35 A. M and joined her at 3:55 A. ML, at dawn. 
Upon our arrival U. S. S. Smith stood to S. E. two 
miles to position of boats and rafts apparently in search 
of survivors. At 4 A. M. commenced circling Coving- 
ton at 20 knots, dropping depth charges at about 15 
minute intervals, so timed and placed alternately to 
port and starboard of vessel and at intervals reversing 
direction of circling to hinder enemy plotting my sta- 
tion. At time of joining, Covington was listed about 
30 degrees to port and very slightly down by stern. 
There was only one man visible aboard the Covington 
and there were neither colors nor commission pennant 
flying. At 4:10 A. M. British Tugs Revenger and 
Woonda joined. I signalled Revenger to call on me for 
any assistance. Revenger signalled about half dozen 
men would be required on Covington to handle lines. 
After having circled and mined the area sufficiently to 
stave off any immediate attack, I sent immediately 
aboard Covington Ensign Wilson, USNRF, and seven 
men from deck and engineer's force to handle towing 
gear and to be of any other assistance in saving the 
vessel. This party ran up colors and secured towing 
lines. At 6:45 A. M. Covington was in tow of U. S. S. 
Concord, H. M. S. Revenger and H. M. S. Woonda. 

At about 4:30, upon return of U. S. S. Smith, he 
signalled me, "Do not send men aboard Covington," 
to which 1 replied I had already done so and asked if I 
should remove them. He replied, "Continue circling 
until destroyers arrive," with which I complied. 

The Smith departed with survivors headed for Brest, 
leaving Captain Hasbrouck, and ordered me to com- 
municate with him by semaphore. Captain Hasbrouck 
boarded H. M. S. Revenger before towing began. I 
spoke with Revenger that I would transmit any mes- 
sages and be ready to give any assistance desired. 

At 7 A. M. U. S. S. Wadsworth joined and I reported 
that I had placed on board Covington one officer and 
seven men to handle lines. I then dropped astern to 
pick up a boatload of men from Covington and at 
their request towed them to Tug Revenger with pro- 
visions. Tug would not receive boat and upon ques- 
tioning boat officer he replied that Capt. Hasbrouck had 


Sinking of the Covington 

shoved them off because he did not bring back enough 
provisions. I gave the boat bread and fresh meat and 
again towed them to alongside Tug Revenger. At 
7:30 U. S. S. Shaw joined. At 8:50 U. S. S. Nicholson 
joined. Under tow of three tugs the Covington was 
able to make about 5 knots per hour. This vessel took 
station as directed on starboard quarter patrolling that 

Signals were received from Ensign Wilson on Cov- 
ington as follows: 1 1 :35 A. M. "Ship has listed seven 

degrees from time of our arrival." 12:30 — "Ship is 
listed 73 degrees." The vessel appeared to be slowly 
settling to port and by the port quarter, and her rail 
was awash. 

At about 2 P. M., U. S. S. Nicholson, directed by U. 
S. S. Shaw, removed all men from Covington. At 2:32 
G. M. T. July 2, U. S. S. Covington settled by the 
stern, her bow rising high out of the water, assumed 
an almost vertical position practically without a list; 
forward deck plates bulged and broke off and she sank 
stern first in less than one minute. 

Reid was then directed by the Wadsworth to proceed 
under original orders. 

J. A. Robbins, seaman, told the following story 
as a member of the Reid's rescue party : 

I had the 12-4 A. M. lookout watch and had just 
been relieved when the Reid arrived on the scene of 
the torpedoing. We steamed up near the Covington, 
which had a heavy list to port. Capt. Davidson called 
out for an officer and seven men to volunteer to go 
aboard the Covington in our port whaleboat, and I 
climbed into the boat as she was being lowered. The 
sea was choppy, with a light swell running, and as the 
boat hit the water she nearly capsized, but righted her- 
self and we seized the oars and made off. W. Mul- 
holland, Chief Water Tender, stepped on the gunwale, 
and being extra heavy upset us somewhat. We pulled 
away and left him hanging to a life line down the side, 
and one of his legs was in the water. He climbed back 
on board on order of the Captain. 

The U. S. S. Smith had stood by the Covington since 
the torpedoing and she was busy picking up survivors 
on rafts and in boats when we arrived. There were 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

about 743 survivors aboard the Smith, including Capt. 
Hasbrouck, of the Covington; a paymaster, the exec- 
utive officer and a number of others, including perhaps 
a dozen engineer ensigns. One small boat was trailing 
the Smith astern and several lying to when we came up 
on the Reid, and these were soon ordered on board the 
Smith. After steaming around the Covington several 
times about sun-up, the Smith set out for Brest. 

As our boat got underway the Smith came near and 
our captain shouted to the captain of the Smith that he 
had shoved off a small boat, and asked if the men should 
be recalled. Receiving no definite response, he did not 
recall us. A slight breeze was blowing out of the south- 
west. It was probably about 4 o'clock when the Reid 
came up, and the sun rose about one hour later. We 
consumed some time circling about the vessel. 

In our boat besides myself were Ensign J. A. Wilson, 
USNRF., in command, and Chief Boatswain's Mate 
G. C. McCabe, Boatswain's Mate David T. Sanders, 
David Udolfsky, seaman gunner; A. J. Lynch, machin- 
ist's mate, second class; W. F. Anderson, gunner's 
mate, second class; J. G. Michalo, seaman. Three 
other members of our crew had got into our boat, and 
returned with it when the main party boarded the Cov- 
ington. We climbed up the starboard side by way of 
the forward boat boom to the deck. It was then about 
6 o'clock. Our duty was primarily to handle lines for 
the Woonda and the Revenger, British tugs which had 
come up, and the Concord, American tug from Brest, 
which had followed them shortly. We found the deck 
aslant and on reaching the chart house saw by the in- 
dicator that the ship was listing 1 8 degrees to port. 
We rushed to make the tugs' lines secure for towing; 
I had found a large flag in the charthouse and we 
hoisted that aft, and then we inspected and unloaded 
the four 6-inch guns; the two machine guns on each 
wing of the bridge were loaded but we did not bother 
them. The two one-pounders at the break of the fore- 
castle were found unloaded. As I searched forward a 
little man fully dressed in blues except for a hat rushed 
past me and refused to stop when I called after him. 
He ran through the passageway and jumped over the 
side at the stern onto a life-raft in the water, and in 
getting on he was hit by the waves. We shouted for 
him to come back and he then climbed up and handed 


Sinking of the Covington 

his watch to Sanders for safe-keeping. He appeared to 
be slightly dazed, but not out of his head. He made a 
statement in which he said he remembered the last life- 
boat being lowered over the side and his companions 
leaving him; it was dark and he could not find his way 
out to take his place with them. So he wandered about 
and probably fell asleep. We examined him carefully 
and found a small knot on his forehead, as if he had 
hit his head on a stanchion when the alarm was 
sounded. We pressed him to change his clothing, 
giving him a dry change, and handed him some canteen 
stores. He slipped on a suit of dungarees and we went 
about our work looking for other survivors. 

The next thing we did was to close all port holes on 
the port side of the berth deck, the other ports appar- 
ently having been closed. We went as low as we could 
in the ship and found water in the engine room flush 
with the top of the starboard cylinder head. There was 
no water forward and none aft, all the way to the keel, 
for the torpedo had hit in the engine room. All of 
us went about our work systematically. The lines were 

got aboard in about 20 minutes, two ten-inch steel 

cables one for each of the British tugs and one 1 2- 

inch hemp hawser, which was considered good mule- 
hauling for seven men, since there were no hand cap- 
stans where we could reach them and all this work 
had to be done by hand. We stripped off all life pre- 
servers and excess clothing so as to be able to work 
better. It was hot work. 

A paymaster of the Covington came aboard about 
5 o'clock, having put off from the Smith in one of the 
Covington's life boats, manned by a Covington crew 
of about 1 6 men. He came aboard for his pay ac- 
counts and money from the ship's safe. He opened up 
the canteen, extracted a quantity of stores for his 
crew's use, and turned the canteen over to Ensign Wil- 
son. The paymaster appeared somewhat excited, the 
Reid dropping several depth charges as he was getting 
his accounts together and chucking them into his valise, 
and adding to the confusion, the boat crew below kept 
yelling, "Come on, the submarine is coming again; 
hurry or we'll pull away and leave you!" On his 
orders, 1 was peering through a port hole, watching 
for the submarine to return. The paymaster had also 
left a considerable sum of money behind, for he had 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

put this on his bunk in the cabin. After filling his grip 
with papers, as the boat crew yelled again, the pay- 
master rushed out of the cabin, leaving the money, 
and the sum was handed to him by Sanders. The pay- 
master was rushing around the cabin looking for 
things, knocking his hat off and now catching it, and 
stumbling over obstacles. Happening to catch his foot 
in a waste basket, he seized it and crammed money into 
it, making off hurriedly. About this time I left, because 
I could hear our Chief Boatswain's Mate yelling for me 
not to bother about things down there, but to come on 
up on the bridge. 

After the paymaster had departed, we began to per- 
fect our organization. Ensign Wilson called us to the 
bridge, and we looked off to port and saw the U. S. S. 
Wadsworth, which had just come up, in charge of 
Capt. C. C. Slayton. Capt. Slaton yelled, "Who's in 
charge of that ship?" and the reply came back through 
signal from Udolfsky, "Ensign John A. Wilson, U. S. N. 
R. F." They asked if they could do anything for us, 
and we said, "No, we are making out all right." 

Mr. Wilson called us around him and said, "Men, we 
have got to save anybody who may still be aboard and 
get this ship back to Brest. McCabe, I appoint you 
executive officer. Udolfsky, I appoint you navigator 
and chief quartermaster. Sanders, you are to be 
the boatswain. Robbins, you are ordinance officer. 
Michalo, you attend to the rations." Udolfsky pulled 
out a long piece of fool's-cap paper which he said he 
would use to keep the ship's log. Capt. Wilson next 
stationed a watch forward, consisting of one man, who 
was relieved every little while by somebody else. 

In the forward compartment I ran across a second 
survivor. He was coming up the ladder carrying his 
mattress and bed-clothing under his arm, and had 
started down into another compartment when we stop- 
ped him. He looked a bit dazed, but talked coherently, 
and was greatly surprised to find that the ship had 
been torpedoed. He said that he had gone to sleep 
at 8 o'clock the night before, an hour before the U- 
boat got in its lick, and had not awakened since. Said 
he found it a little bit close below and was taking his 
mattress to the main deck to continue his nap and get 
more air. This man was about 23 years old, with light 


Sinking of the Covington 

hair, blue eyes, stumpy, and was in his underwear. He 
complained of pains all over his body, and could not 
walk very fast. This fellow was a sleepy-headed indi- 
vidual without much life, and he would talk little, and 
did not seem much elated over his deliverance, but 
shambled off in the direction of the waiting boat. In- 
stead of getting into the boat, however, he flopped his 
mattress down on deck and went to sleep again. He 
stayed with us until the ship sank and was taken off 
with us. 

The tugs in the meanwhile were towing the ship at 
the rate of four or five knots, hoping to make Brest, 
but it was about 150 miles away. It was now approxi- 
mately I I o'clock. When we first started back there 
was a life raft floating on the starboard side of the 
vessel, attached to the deck by a line, and lines, rafts 
and rope ladders hung pretty generally over the sides, 
particularly the starboard side. About 1 1 o'clock this 
life raft was hanging on the side of the ship, entirely 
out of the water, and the list had increased to about 25 
degrees. We had a time making our way about the 
deck, for it seemed to be slipping from under us, so we 
caught hold of things and held on. When she would 
lurch suddenly, the ballast we held to would slide across 
deck, and us with it. 

On boarding the Covington we inspected the radio 
shack and found the buzzer active, making a rasping 
sound which we cut off by reversing a switch. The 
forward hatches were closed, and only a few port holes 
were open in the sick bay, and we closed them. There 
was a great deal of personal property scattered about, 
indicating the haste with which the departure was 
made; chiffonier drawers stood open, clothing was on 
the deck, bunks disarranged, for the most of the men 
were just about to turn in for the night. We found 
several phonographs and records in good condition, 
and after doing all we possibly could to secure and 
save the ship, we hauled a machine to the bridge and 
had a little m"sic and refreshments from the canteen. 
Everybody was in good humor and we talked about a 
hrndred plans for saving the ship, provided we only 
had enough men to shift ballast or a pumn to pumo 
her out, or a huge jack to jack her up. or a barge to tie 
her to. Some of us thought if we didn't get into 
rougher weather we would make it to port anyhow. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

This was at 1 1 o'clock, but on reading the indicator 
again we saw that the ship was listing 25 to 28 degrees, 
and she seemed to hesitate on her side longer than be- 
fore. She would go over with the swell and lie there 
a few seconds, then slowly come back to the minimum 
list and stay there three or four minutes. We had made 
a line fast between two points on the starboard side, 
which was always high, and when we wanted to get 
about along deck we swung onto this line or clung to 
the railing or anything else handy. Soon we realized 
that the fight to save her was hopeless, that it was just 
a question of time before she would go down. The 
wind had increased and white caps were beginning to 
spring up. The wind swept through the rigging in 
the direction of the ship's list, and sometimes we felt 
like she wasn't coming back. Then she struggled to 
right herself and her hawsers creaked, dishes rattled, 
tables slid around, we would pull hard with her, and 
back she would come again. McCabe kept us in good 
spirit by chirping as he hung onto the outboard rail- 
ing like a rat, "She's going over this time!" Then he 
would say more hopefully, "Nope; next week!" 

The stern was slowly settling and the bow rising 
high. The bow was the highest main part of the ship 

at this hour about 1 :30 P. M. and we all clambered 

as far forward as possible and straddled the railing. 
Mr. Wilson then ordered us to stand by to be taken off, 
for the Reid had signalled us to leave immediately on 
life rafts, as they didn't think they had time to lower 
boats, and would pick us up later. By this time two 
French boats of small size had come up, one of them 
towing empty life boats of the Covington, and three 
destroyers (including Nicholson) were circling around 
the sinking ship, then standing by at a respectful dis- 
tance. It was a stupendous sight. 

We did not abandon ship yet, because we thought 
we heard pounding and voices below. We went below 
and searched for the sounds, but the noises seemed in- 
distinct and from all directions. This was far forward^ 
near the chain locker. From that time until the Nich- 
olson lowered a small boat for us we searched for more 
imprisoned men, but not knowing the ship well, or 
definitely where to look, we could not find them. The 
flag astern was half under water, and the waves were 
washing across the stern. The captain of the Nichol- 


Sinking of the Covington 

son hollered through his megaphone for us to leave 
the ship at once. It was now easier to walk on the 
starboard side of the vessel than on the deck, so we 
walked along the side to a point amidships, as the small 
boat was drifting with the wind and they were having 
a hard time reaching the ship. Finally they came 
alongside, all out of breath and practically exhausted, 
and the coxswain of the small boat shouted, "Damn it, 
hurry up!" And Udolfsky yelled back, "Don't lose 
your head, mate; there's not much in it." We clambered 
down into the boat and Ensign Wilson remained a few 
minutes aboard. When he had counted our seven 
men and the two survivors, and had seen that the in- 
dicator registered 48, he came down. We then were 
landed on the Nicholson, and from the deck watched 
her slowly sink. I felt like 1 had lost a good friend, a 
friend that there was a fighting chance to save, as we 
had told our shipmates aboard the Reid that we would 
let them come and inspect her when we reached Brest. 

The London Daily Mail carried the following ac- 
count of the Covington disaster in which claim was 
made that the attacking submarine was sunk : 

Dr. W. H. Fulton, pastor of the First Presbyterian 
Church of Rockford, 111., the only man in khaki on 
board the American Transport Covington when she was 
torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine a week 
ago last Monday, has just arrived in Paris. 

Describing what happened to a representative of the 
Chicago Tribune, after the first alarm, Dr. Fulton said: 

"Four or five minutes after the torpedo exploded we 
caught sight of the submarine's conning tower. The 
gun crew were the first to notice it. Their first shot 
went wild, but the second exploded exactly on the spot 
where the conning tower had been seen. The next thing 
we saw was a large black mass on the surface of the 
water. Another shell from the gun landed right 
beneath this dark object. We saw the explosion. 

"The fragments seemed to glance off the U-boat's 
side and fly upwards. Then the thing went down, not 
to appear again. We had sunk a submarine. At least 
twenty men standing around the gun platform watched 
this take place. 

"One of the crew, a young Portuguese, regaining 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

consciousness next day, came down to the main deck. 
An English tug stood alongside the Covington and its 
crew were trying to put a line on the transport to tow 
her to port. The Portuguese protested against such 
interference. He said he would come down and throw 
the tug crew into the water if they persisted in their 
design. They had to fetch one of the ship's officers 
before the Portuguese would allow the tug crew to go 
on with their work." 

Dr. W. H. Fulton's version was disputed in a 
statement made by Arthur C. Lervik, a Covington 
machinist's mate who was later assigned to duty on 
the Reid. Lervik' s story ran thus: 

At 8:45 P. M. o'clock I was at my station in the 
engine room and had just taken the temperature read- 
ings, and was about to report them to the throttle man 
to enter in the engine room log, when the explosion 
came. The explosion knocked me down, a quick 
rush of air having come through the air shaft leading 
into the throttle room and from thence to the engine- 
room. I was stunned but not really hurt; I felt deaf, 
with a slight headache, and doped from the fumes of 
gas arising from the explosion. The engineer officer, 
Lieut. Johnson, was in the engineroom at the time. 
Several floor plates under the logroom desk were 
lifted up and crevices formed. Mr. Johnson was look- 
ing over the log, and as the floor plates parted, he fell 
into the bilge, catching by his arms, and was assisted 
back to the deck by two throttle men. 

The Covington seemed to rise suddenly, then to 
settle back down and to list over on her port side, on 
which side she was hit. The commanding officer, 
Capt. R. D. Hasbrouck, and others expressed the 
opinion that it was a torpedo that hit the ship. The 
torpedo hit just forward of the bulkhead between the 
engineroom and the after fireroom on the port side and 
tore a big hole through which water rushed, filling 
up both firerooms. There was no bulkhead between 
the two firerooms, that is, there was a large passage- 
way through the bulkhead which had no doors, so that 
the water flowed freely from the after fireroom to the 
forward fireroom. 

All hands left the engineroom hurriedly and went 

Sinking of the Covington 

to the top side. We found the deck hands and others 
running about trying to get the small boats over the 
side. Six men were missing when the roll was called; 
three of these are supposed to have been killed in the 
explosion, and the other three were lost over the side 
when they jumped without waiting for the order to 
abandon ship. I had on only dungarees and light un- 
derwear, so rushed below in the starboard crew's com- 
partment about midships to get more clothing, and 
found water coming through ports and thence through 
the wash room and into the crew's quarters, the ports 
having been smashed by the explosion on that side. It 
was supposed that open ports in the sick bay let in ad- 
ditional water. These ports were kept open usually for 
ventilating purposes. By a patent arrangement of port 
cover, which was appended inside the ship, air could 
be admitted without admitting water except under ex- 
treme pressure like in a case of immersion, and the 
light from inside did not shine through the ports. These 
ports were high and the waves seldom gave any trouble. 

I hastily pulled on my jumper and went up on deck, 
the general quarters alarm having been sounded, and 
everybody having sprung to their stations. There was 
quite a slant in the deck due to the list, and straight 
walking was difficult. Twenty minutes after the ex- 
plosion I looked down through the engineroom hatch, 
and saw that the water had immersed the cylinder 
heads. I do not know how water could have got into 
the engineroom, since it was protected by bulkheads, 
unless one of the bulkheads gave way, which was im- 
probable. About 25 minutes after the explosion the 
crew was ordered to abandon ship. Several of the 
small boats on the port side had been smashed in the 
explosion, but there was ample accommodation for 
the officers and crew of 685 men. The boats were 
got over the side in very good order; they were put 
off both port and starboard sides, but could be handled 
more easily to port, because the list was that way and 
the boats swung clear of the side. Inside of about half 
an hour practically everybody had left the ship and 
the boat crews manned the oars and put us into posi- 
tion to be picked up by the USS. Smith (destroyer), 
which from the first had stood by the Covington under 
orders. The Smith first circled the Covington and 
dropped a string of depth charges at intervals. The 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

boat that I was in went alongside the Smith within an 
hour and all of us clambered to the decks, and all of 
the officers and crew were aboard within an hour and 
a half, after which the Smith continued all night to 
circle around the Covington, dropping depth charges 
at intervals of about an hour. Two other destroyers 
stood by for a time, but proceeded on duty assigned. 

The officers were the last to leave the ship, that is, 
the deck officers, including the captain. We heard 
later that two or three men had been left on board, 
since they were asleep and the force of the explosion 
did not awaken them. 

Shortly after daylight the next morning, July 2, 1918, 
the Destroyer Reid hove in sight and stood by the 
Covington, circling and dropping occasional depth 
charges. The Smith shoved off a boat's crew to get 
stores out of the Covington's canteen, this crew being 
made up of Covington survivors and commanded by a 
lieutenant, and this crew presently brought back a lot 
of stores. They went back again and increased their 
stock and returned aboard the Smith. 

Soon after the Reid arrived, two British tugs and an 
American tug, the Concord, arrived on the scene and 
made ready to take the Covington in tow. One of the 
British tugs was the Woonda. They happened to be 
steaming in the vicinity when they heard the Coving- 
ton's wireless call telling of the torpedoing. The Con- 
cord had made a quick run from Brest. About 5 A. M. 
the Smith departed for Brest at about 20 knots, negoti- 
ating the 150 miles by about noon. Members of the 
Smith's crew gave up their bunks and places at table to 
members of the Covington's crew, furnished them with 
clothing and other necessities and cared for them in a 
very seamanlike manner. On account of the small 
space, most of the Covington men were forced to re- 
main on deck, and the crowding was such that the 
only way to make it forward from aft was to walk 
along the deck by the life lines. On arrival at Brest, 
the Covington men were taken to the Chateau and 
reassigned to duty. 

The Covington was not quite 1 7000 tons, having 
formerly been the Cincinnati of the Hamburg- 
American line. She could make 14 knots. It was her 
sixth voyage carrying American troops to Brest. She 

Sinking of the Covington 

was in ballast. Ordinarily she could transport 3,000 
men, but on occasion had carried as many as 3,500. 
The weather was fair and the sea nearly smooth at 
the time of the torpedoing. A gun's crew shot at 
something they thought was a submarine shortly after 
the impact, but there is doubt that the object was a 
U-boat. Other ships in the convoy were the DeKalb, 
the Rijndam, the Powhatan, the Huron, the 
Pocahontas and one I do not remember. I shall never 
forget the sight of the Covington as I saw her from the 
deck of the Smith. She lay there like a spectre, help- 
less and ghostlike, with only a beam of light through 
a hatch to indicate that there was any life aboard. 

$ffa*MM : ^M^ 


x^^yZ- , ^. yz^ 



" Barnacles" from the Log 

ND now we come to the good ship's log, 
kept more or less informally by a landsman 
gob, for the benefit of readers who prefer 
that style of literary lore, and covering more 

than 70,000 miles of steaming in the submarine 
zones during 1 6 months of the war. A record of the 
total number of miles steamed was kept in the engine 
room log by Chief Machinist E. G. Ziemann, and 
was computed from the revolutions of the engines. 
Preceding the "log barnacles" is a step-by-step 
outline of war movements and incidents concerning 
our Allies, dating from June 28, 1914, and ending 
May 21, 1917, after Congress declared war on Ger- 
many for the United States. It is believed gentle read- 
ers everywhere will appreciate this feature, since it 
links up the earlier days of the cataclysm with the 
later days and enables one to get a perspective that 
would be impossible otherwise. Therefore you are 
requested, should the first part prove a trifle burden- 
some, to wade through it nevertheless with a stout 
heart in the interest of fidelity to history; for lo! you 
will soon enough find your precious self head over 
heels in the adventures and the accomplishments of 
the wild and wooly crew of the Reid! 


June 28 — Archduke Ferdinand of Austria and wife assassi- 
nated at Sarajevo, Bosnia. 

July 28 — Austria declares war on Serbia; Germany mobi- 
lizes fleet. 

August 1 — Germany declares war on Russia. 

August 3 — Germany declares war on France and Belgium 
and invades Belgium. 

August 4 — Britain declares state of war exists with Ger- 
many. Liege attacked. 

August 6 — Austria declares war on Russia. 

August 9 — Serbia declares war on Germany. 


Azorean peasants in "evening dress" at Ponta Delgada. 
Uncorrupted by joy rides and city ways, they cling to old 
customs, attend to their own business and only ask to be 
let alone. 



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"Barnacles" from the Log 

August : I —Germans invade France at Longwy; Montene- 
gro declares war on Germany, France on Austria. 

August I 2 England declares war on Austria. 

August 20 Germans occupy Brussels. 

August 23 — Japan at war with Germany. 
August 28— Five German warships sunk off Helgoland. 
September 3 — French capital moved to Bordeaux. 
September 7 — German advance on Paris turned back at 

the Marne. 
September 1 2— Allies attack on the Aisne, opening the 

world s greatest battle. 
October 9 — Germans capture Antwerp. 

October 30 Russia declares war on Turkey. 

November 1— Germans sink Admiral Cradock's fleet off 

November 5 — Great Britain declares war on Turkey. 
November 9 — Germans surrender Tsingtau. 
December 8— -Four German cruisers sunk by British off 

ralkland Islands. 
December 1 16— German ships bombard West Hartlepool. 
December 24 — First German air raid on England. 


January 24 Naval battle off Dogger Bank. 

February 2 — Britain declares all food contraband. 
February 1 1— United States warns belligerents not to at- 
tack American ships. 

February I 7 Germans begin submarine blockade, despite 

United States protest. 

February 23 United States steamer Carib sunk by North 

Sea mine. 
February 25 — Allied fleet attacks Dardanelles. 

March 18 Three Ally battleships sunk in Dardanelles. 

March 23 Allies land at Dardanelles. 

May 6 — Lusitania sunk by U-Boat; 1,000 die; 100 Ameri- 
May 1 3 — Wilson demands reparation for Lusitania lives. 

May 22 Italy declares war on Austria. 

July 2 Pommern sunk in Baltic. 

August 18 — Russian fleet victorious in Riga Gulf. 
September 1 — Germany agrees to sink no more liners with- 
out warning. 
September 25 Allies' drive begun in France; 20,000 cap- 
tured. K 
October 6 — French and British land in Greece. 
October 9 Germans occupy Belgrade, invading Serbia. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

November 6 — Bulgarians take Nish, Serb capital. 

December 4 — Ford peace party sails. 

December 9 — All Allies driven from Serbia. 

December 1 9 — Allies evacuate Gallipoli. 

December 25 — Ford leaves peace party. 


January 1 7 — Montenegro makes separate peace. 

February 23 — Germans open attack on Verdun. 

April 24 — Irish revolt in Dublin. 

April 28 — British surrender to the Turks at Kut-el-Amara. 

May 1 5 — Austrians open offensive against Italy. 

May 30 — Fourteen British and 18 German warships sunk 
in great naval battle in North Sea. 

June 1 4 — Allied Conference in Paris votes commercial boy- 
cott of Germany after war. 

July 9 — German submarine liner reaches Baltimore. 

August 27 — Roumania entered the war. 

December 1 5 French victory at Verdun. 

December 20 — President Wilson's peace note. 


February 1 — "Unrestricted" U-boat war begun. 

February 3 — America broke with Germany. 

March 1 2 — Revolution in Russia. 

April 5 — U. S. S. Missourian, unarmed, sunk in Mediter- 
ranean. Horse ship Canadian, carrying 56 Americans, 

April 6 — U. S. Congress declared war with Germany. 

April 17 — Destroyer Smith (17) reported by wireless to 
Boston that a submarine tried to torpedo her. 

April 28 — Lieut. Thomas and four gunners lost when U. 
S. S. Vacuum, an oil tanker, was sunk. 

April 30 — Washington reports that the impression is gain- 
ing ground that President Wilson will embark a small 
force for France shortly after more conferences with the 
Allied commissions. 

May 2 — U. S. S. Rockingham sunk by submarine, London 

May 4 — Squadron of American destroyers reached Queens- 
town for duty. 

May 1 4 — Paris reported 1 7 unarmed French merchant ships 
sunk during February, March and April, 1917. 

June 4 — Yachts Kanawha, Christabel, Noma, Har- 
vard, Vedette, Sultana, Corsair and Aphrodite 
left New York for France. Reid at Brooklyn. 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

June 1 2 — Reid convoying Battleship Illinois toward 
Yorktown. King Constantine abdicated Greek 
throne. Yachts Kanawha, Christabel, Noma, 
Harvard, Vedette and Sultana arrived at St. 
George's, Bermuda. 

June 30 — Arrived at Tompkinsville, S. I., with De- 
stroyer Preston (19). Left at 10 P. M., Preston 
accompanying, convoying French Steamer La 
Touraine, with Prince of Udine and Italian Com- 
mission to United States aboard. Ships darkened. 

July 4 — Yachts Kanawha, Christabel, Noma, Har- 
vard, Vedette and Sultana arrived at base, Brest, 
France (via Ponta Delgada, Azores). Shortly 
before entering harbor, the Noma sighted a peri- 
scope and the Steamer Orleans was torpedoed; 50 
survivors of Orleans landed at Brest by Sultana. 

July 21 — Reid left Charleston at midnight at 20 
knots for Bermuda with Preston. Capt. Slayton 
and ship's cook made their wills. 

July 23 — At 6:10 P. M. arrived at St. Georges, 
Bermuda; met by Tug Powerful, whose com- 
mander shouted through megaphone, "I'm going 
to board you!" Mumps epidemic aboard. 

July 26 — Left St. George's for Ponta Delgada, 
Azores, Preston accompanying. Lookout re- 
ported cloud bank as submarine and received 
bawling out by officer of deck. Weather fine; 
sea smooth. At 1 P. M. several lookouts were 
caught asleep by executive officer, who let them 
off with warning. 

July 29 (Sunday) — Fine and smooth; nights pleas- 
ant and part of crew sleeping under torpedo tubes 
and around smoke stacks and in small boats. 

July 30 — Ran into schools of porpoises which raced 
with us. At dusk sighted suspicious-looking ob- 
ject two miles away on port beam; looked like 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

conning tower of submarine. Turned out to be a 
floating target left by some ship. Banged away 
with machine gun, which jammed at first. 

July 31 — At 6:05 A. M. sighted peaks of Pico Is- 
land, Azores, 52 miles away. At 2 P. M. sighted 
St. Michael's Island 65 miles away. Officers 
shooting at fish and turtles with pistols. Epi- 
demic of mumps continued and poetry broke 
out in the galley. Anchored at 4:45 P. M. at 
Ponta Delgada, St. Michael's Island, Azores, with 
40 tons of coal aboard. Boarded by Portuguese 
port officer and health officer. Bum-boat men 
came alongside with pineapples at three for a quar- 
ter and wine under the boat seats. Not allowed 
to bring wine aboard. Destroyers Smith (17) 
and Lamson (18) in harbor. Liberty granted 
from 7 P. M. to midnight and all hands went 
ashore. Great Allied attack started around 

August 3 — Sacramento stood out, probably bound 
for England. Reid and Preston skirted islands 
hunting submarines. 

August 4 — Steamed into Angra do Heroismo, Ter- 
ceira Island, and Horta, Island of Fayal, with 

August 5 (Sunday) — At Ponta Delgada. Two 
boatloads of survivors of Bark Doris and their 
dog rowed into harbor. Governor of Island and 
Secretary called on commanding officer in high 
hats and with canes. 

August 6 — Natives coaling ship, assisted by crew. 
Commanding officer was informed French steamer 
was sunk with gunfire and her motor boat stolen. 

August 7 — Portuguese Steamer San Miguel stood 
out. Destroyers Smith and Lamson stood out, pat- 
rolling islands, watching for pro-German signal 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

lights m the hills. Preston received radio mes- 
sage saying French Steamer Marthe was being 
shelled by submarine. Reid and Preston stood 
by waiting for more information. U. S. S. Mo- 
tano sunk by submarine and 24 lives lost. 
August 8— At 12:05 A. M. Preston and Reid got 
underway to assist Marthe. At 1 A. M. joined 
by Lamson and discovered Marthe life boat, 
smashed ; also a cabin chair and some wreckage'. 
Passed another life boat, bottom side up Re- 
ceived S O. S. from Prinz Oscar II, Norwegian 
vessel. Heard Marthe s crew fought submarine 
an hour and lost four gunners; 35 survivors land- 
l n at i Funcha1 ' Madeira. Steamer Dunraven 
shelled and torpedoed by submarine off Coast of 
France; Yacht Noma forced submarine to sub- 
merge; Dunraven sank. 

August 9 — Steamer Tidewater (U. S.) put in with 
captain and survivors of Prinz Oscar II. British 
Steamer Hortensius put into Ponta Delgada with 
Captain Bacon and 88 survivors of the British 
Steamer Iran. Captain Bacon came aboard and 
told his story. 

August 11 — San Jorge, Beira and Cinquo du Outu- 
bro (Portuguese man-of-war) stood in and Hali- 
k S n? d ° Ut Nashville (gunboat) stood in; Pan- 
ther (U. S.) stood in, convoyed by Destroyer Flus- 
ser. Captain C. M. Crooks, of the American Bark 
Chnstiane, and two boatloads of survivors landed. 
Captain Crooks came aboard and told his story 
to Captain Slayton, and exhibited a receipt for his 
vessel signed by the submarine commander, 
Ober-Leutnant E. L. Eyring. Announced U. S. 
S. Camp ana, Standard Oil tanker, sunk and cap- 
tain and four of naval guard probably captured. 

August 13 (Sunday)— Reid and Preston patrolling 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

in loop toward Madeira. Set mines for firing and 
ordered everybody on deck to don life preservers. 
Steaming dark at night. 

August 1 4 — Went to general quarters on sighting 
Italian steamer. Exchanged recognition signals 
and convoyed her until 8:30 P. M. Lookout re- 
ported rising moon as light. Announced five U. 
S. citizens lost when U. S. S. City of Athens hit 
mine off coast of Africa, August 13. 

Aug. 1 5 — Yacht Noma fired ten shots at submarine 
on surface off Coast of France, submarine reply- 
ing with three shots, then submerged; position, 
47-40 N., 5-05 W. 

August 1 6 — Preston and Reid escorted Gunboat 
Castine into Ponta Delgada. Swung ship. Tide- 
water and Flusser stood out. 

August 1 8 — Portuguese Schooner Livramento, with 
cargo of pigs from Fayal, reported sighting sub- 
marine 20 miles off St. Michael's Island. Day 
watch put on all United States ships at Ponta Del- 

August 19 (Sunday) — The following yachts stood 
in from the States : Alcedo, Guinevere, Carola IV, 
Corona, Wanderer, Remlik and Emeline. Flusser 
stood in. 

August 20 — Sailor shot a sailor ashore and all yacht 
crew liberty was cut off. 

August 2 1 — Portuguese patrol boat fired green 
rockets and shot outside break-water when Ameri- 
can tramp steamer attempted to run dark into 
harbor. All crews went to general quarters, and 
tramp ran on rocks. 

August 23 — Steamer Roma, Fabre Liner, stood in. 
Alcedo, Guinevere, Carola IV, Corona, Wanderer, 
Remlik and Emeline got under way for France. 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

August 24 — Italian Steamer Dante Alighieri stood 
in from New York, loaded with Italian reservists. 
Twenty-seven ships in harbor. 

August 25 — Convoyed Dante Alighieri 300 miles 
toward Gibraltar, and reservists cheered, whistled 
and sang as we left them. Flusser with us. 

August 26 (Sunday) — Ship's cook reported "peri- 
scope." Machine gun jammed again. It was 
only a floating spar. Steaming toward coast of 
Spain. Rough weather and dishes won't stay on 
chow tables. 

August 29 — Escorted Italian Steamer Pediladia into 
Ponta Delgada. U. S. S. Seneca stood in from 
States. President Wilson wrote another note to 
the Pope. Yachts Guinevere and Carola IV ar- 
rived at Brest. 

August 30 — Italian Steamer Re D' Italia and Dan- 
ish Schooner Fritz stood out. Lamson and Smith 
stood out. Yachts Alcedo, Wanderer, Remlik, 
Corona and Emeline reached Brest base. 

September 5 — Portuguese Steamer Funchal stood in 
with 200 Portuguese troops for garrison. Chester 
stood out toward Gibraltar. Lamson and Smith 
stood in. 

September 6 — The following U. S. vessels stood in 
from the States, bound for France: Bath, Wakiva, 
Cahill, Courtney, James, Rehoboth, McNeal, Ossi- 
pee, Douglas, Anderton, Lewes, Hinton, Bauman, 
and Submarine Chasers 383, 384 and 385 (man- 
ned by French crews). Reid out patrolling is- 

September 8 — Escorted Revenue Cutter Manning 
until relieved by Flusser. 

September 9 (Sunday) — Reid returned to base. 

September 16 (Sunday) — In morning baseball game 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Reid beat Flusser 12-1 1 . Gunboat Wheeling and 
Destroyers Truxtun (14) and Worden stood in. 
Parana, Royal Mail Steam Packet, put in from 
Newport, Eng., after running fight of one hour 
with submarine, 200 miles south of Lizard Head. 

September 1 8 — Supply Ship Bath, Yacht Wakiva 
and the Trawlers City of Lewes, Anderton, Bau- 
man, Douglas, James, Hinton, Cahill, Rehoboth, 
Courtney and McNeal reached Brest. 

September 20 — J. Sweeney this date caught a large 
fish which he landed on deck. Submarine report- 
ed near island by Portuguese fisherman and gun 
crew slept on deck at guns. 

September 28 — Reid and Preston patrolling St. 
Mary's Island. French Steamer Roma stood out. 

September 29 — At 9 A. M. picked up British 
Steamer Canopic, White Star Liner, and convoyed 
her west five hours, when turned her over to 
Whipple (15) and Truxtun. Passed wreckage 
and ship's mast peak painted white. 

October 1 — Back to Ponta Delgada with Preston. 

October 2 — Canopic stood out at 1 1 P. M. Whip- 
ple stood out. 

October 4 — Portuguese Gunboat Cinquo du Outu- 
bro and Steamer San Miguel stood in. Tug Re- 
hoboth swamped and sunk in storm between 
France and England. 

October 5 — Ships dressed ship in honor of seventh 
year of Portugal's independence as a Republic. 

October 7 (Sunday) — Sailors attended church. At 
4:30 P. M. Reid and Flusser left for Queenstown, 
convoying Collier Nero at 8 knots. 

October 8 — Uneventful. 

October 9 — At 4 :30 P. M. storm broke. 

October 10 — Storm continued. Moon rose at 1 :40 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

A. M. French Ship Transporteur sunk by tor- 
pedo off France; 21 survivors picked up by 
French Patrol Boat Afrique II. 

October 1 1 — Storm at its height. Canaries hatched 
three young birds in firemen's compartment. 
Nero kicking out six knots. 

October 12 — Poured oil overboard and sea's fury 
abated somewhat. 

October 1 3 — Storm slowed down and we increased 
speed. At 9 :45 A. M. headed at good clip to- 
ward mine fields entering Queenstown Harbor; 
patrol boats ran out and turned us into different 
course. Light rains. Mother canary flying over 
fan-tail gobbled up by seagull. Underway at 
1 :09 P. M. for Cardiff, Wales, through Bristol 

October 14 (Sunday) — At 3:05 P. M. entered Car- 
diff with Flusser (which lost foremast in storm). 
Sunday afternoon liberty. 

October 1 5— At 7:58 P. M. underway for Queens- 
town with Flusser. Storm started. Steered clear 
of floating mine. 

October 16 — At 2:30 A. M. storm carried away 
motor boat. Sighted empty life boat. Moored 
at Queenstown at 1 P. M. Liberty. Old Irish wo- 
men at pier sold gobs "apples, pears and beauti- 
ful nuts." 

October 1 7 — Transport Antilles sunk off France; 70 
of 237 aboard reported lost. Wadsworth (60), 
Wainwright (62) and British Cruiser Adventure 
stood in. 

October 18 — Destroyer Cassin (43) towed to dock, 
having been torpedoed astern by submarine. 

October 19 — Panther, Lamson, Preston and Smith 
left for new base, Brest, France. American 
steamer J. L. Luckenback exchanged 200 shots 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

with submarine on surface 200 miles west of Brest. 
Seven of U-boat's shells hit the steamer. Luck- 
enback sent an "alio," which was intercepted by 
the Destroyer Nicholson. The destroyer wired: 
"I am coming; make all smoke possible to make 
yourself visible." After two hours a shell put the 
steamer's engines out of order and cut down the 
smokestack, causing her to stop. An hour later 
the Nicholson hove in sight and fired four shots 
at the submarine, forcing it to duck. The Luck- 
enback limped into Le Havre, badly damaged and 
with a fire in her crew's quarters. British Steam- 
ship Austradale torpedoed off France and sank in 
three minutes. Survivors manned three life 

October 20 — Melville and Dixie and Destroyer 
Wilkes (67) in harbor. Wainwright, Shaw (68) 
and Walke (34) stood out. 

October 21 (Sunday) — Alongside Burrows (29). 
Warrington (30) and Allen (66) in harbor. At 
4 P. M. Reid and Flusser underway for new base 
at Brest, France. Capt. W. B. Fletcher detached 
and Rear Admiral Henry B. Wilson ordered to 
take charge at Brest. 

October 22— At 11 A. M. tied up at Brest beside 
Panther. Smooth trip. Liberty at 5 P. M. Two 
boatloads of survivors of Austradale reached Port 
Kerrel; whaleboat with 24 men lost. 

October 23 — Rammed by Tug James. 

October 24 — Towed to French Navy Yard for re- 
pairs. Yachts Noma and Alcedo stood out. 

October 27 — Destroyer Fanning (37), assisted by 
Destroyer Nicholson (52), captured crew of U-58 
about 40 miles out of Queenstown. 

October 28 (Sunday) — Transport Finland torpe- 
doed 200 miles west of Brest. 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

October 29 — Yser stood out. Reid went into dry 
dock with Tug Cahill. Fall of Udine. Two 
American hydroplanes off France dropped four 
bombs at a submarine seen beneath the surface of 
the sea. The U-boat dived deeper. 

November 3 — Commanding Officer called on Rear 
Admiral Wilson. 

November 5 — Yacht Alcedo, first United States war 
vessel, sunk 60 miles west of Brest. A. T. Ed- 
wards, seaman of Norfolk, Va., formerly of Reid, 
reported killed in bunk by torpedo and body not 
recovered. Note : George Greene, of Colum- 
bus, Ga., and George A. Borgman, seamen 
formerly on Reid, previously reported killed in 
explosion on Cruiser Des Moines. Big Allied 
Conference at Hotel Crillon, Paris. 

November 8 — Bolshevist coup d'etat in Russia. 

November 14 — Germans within 15 miles of Venice. 

November 20 — French steamer sunk near Brest, and 
numerous submarines reported lying in wait for 
American transports. Reid towed out of Navy 
Yard, passing old French Monitor Furieux. Brit- 
ish victory at Cambrai. 

November 23 — At 7 A. M. left for below St. Naz- 
aire to convoy U. S. S. Santa Rosa and two mer- 
chant ships to Brest. 

November 24 — Two floating mines exploded near 
Brest Harbor by mine sweepers. Arrived Brest 
4 P. M. French destroyer reported blown up. 
String band gave concert in wardroom. 

November 26 (Thanksgiving Day)— At 7:10 A. M. 
stevedores came aboard and started coaling ship. 

November 27 — Destroyers Monaghan (32) and 
Roe (24), arriving at Brest from St. Nazaire on 
first trip to Brest, without proper French charts, 
entered Iroise Channel mine field, instead of tak- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

ing Raz de Sein, as warned by a Flag Office mes- 
sage. Steamed safely through. Von Steuben 
tugged to outer harbor. Agamemnon and Von 
Steuben underway westward, accompanied by 
Reid, Roe, Lamson, O'Brien, McDougal, Patter- 
son, Paulding, Jarvis and Monaghan. Reid and 
Roe left convoy at entrance to channels and re- 
turned to base under orders. 
November 28 — At 6:20 P. M. Yacht Kanawha, with 
west-bound convoy, Steamships Koln and Me- 
dina, reported periscope headed for the Medina. 
At 6:50 the Yacht Noma sighted a periscope, and 
dropped two depth charges. At 7:02 the Yacht 
Wakiva sighted a periscope. The submarine 
swung out of position on the convoy to cover the 
Wakiva with a bow tube, but the Wakiva gave 
hard left rudder and let the submarine cross her 
stern, at the same time firing three shots from the 
port aft gun, the periscope disappearing as the 
third shot hit it. The Wakiva then dropped two 
depth charges which functioned perfectly. The 
conning tower of the U-boat emerged a minute 
afterward and the Wakiva opened fire with her 
starboard forward gun, the second shell detonat- 
ing. The conning tower went down and as the 
yacht passed over the spot, a large number of 
bubbles and some wreckage were observed. Two 
more depth charges were exploded and, passing 
again over the spot, the commanding officer 
thought he saw three men clinging to wreckage, 
but on turning and swinging around again, the 
objects had disappeared. At midnight the Yacht 
Noma sighted a periscope and fired two depth 
charges, but without discernible results. Two 
submarines are thought to have been operating, 
for the radio man on the Noma heard three mes- 
sages in German, sent at low power. It was con- 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

sidered certain that the Wakiva sank one of the 

November 30 — French Cruiser Conde tugged to 
French Navy Yard. Monaghan and Roe stood 
in. At 6:30 A. M. left with Preston, Yacht Cor- 
sair and French destroyers convoying 20 merchant 
vessels southward to coast points. Germans 
threw British back at Cambrai. 

December 1 — At 7 P. M. submarine reported in 
convoy and destroyers dropped 7 depth charges. 

December 2 (Sunday) — Anchored at Brest at 5 :30 
A. M. Corsair and Noma stood in. 

December 3 — Picked up Morgan liner and 8 other 
vessels with Warrington, Smith, Lamson and 
Preston. Arrived Quiberon 4:30 P. M. 

December 4 — At 8:55 A. M. commanding officers 
held conference on Cruiser San Diego. At 1 
same destroyers hit up 1 9 knots for Brest. French 
Sailer St. Antoine de Padouex, bound for Fe- 
camp, engaged in running fight with submarine. 

December 6 — Armistice on Russian Front. 

December 7 — Rear Admiral Sims spent 5 minutes 
on board. At 3:07 P. M. Reid, Roe, Smith, 
Preston, Warrington and Flusser convoying San 
Diego and Mt. Vernon 800 miles westward. 
Making 18 knots. Received several SOS mes- 
sages; passed two life boats, one bottom side up. 
Increased speed to 2 1 knots. 

December 8 — The French Steamer Voltaire II was 
sunk off Belle He. 

December 9 (Sunday) — Preston fired a shot near 
Reid. Nothing seen. At 8:25 A. M. left San 
Diego and Mt. Vernon and hit up 1 5 knots for 
base, column formation. British captured Jeru- 
salem. French Steamer Barsac sunk between 
Brest and Le Havre with loss of eighteen men. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

December 1 1 — Stood into Brest with destroyers at 
5 A. M. Heard of sinking Dec. 6 of Destroyer 
Jacob Jones off Queenstown; position 49-25 N, 
06-22 W. ; torpedoed by submarine. 

December 1 3 — Twenty-four of crew of Voltaire II 
picked up by French trawler and landed at Lo- 

December 14 — At 3:55 P. M. left Brest with Pres- 
ton, Flusser, Lamson, Smith. Convoyed mer- 
chantmen to Quiberon. 

December 15 — At 4:57 A. M. arrived at Quiberon. 
At 9:40 A. M. started swinging ship; bay and 
weather calm; finished at 1 1 :45 A. M. At 2 :1 
P. M. Monaghan and Roe underway and stood 
out, convoying southeast along coast. At 2 :20 
P. M. Corsair ditto. At 2 :30 P. M. Warrington 
underway. At 3:40 P. M. First Division under- 
way, convoying Powhatan (flagship carrying S. 
O. P., formerly German Hamburg) and Mada- 
waska (formerly Konig Wilhelm II). 

December 16 (Sunday) — At 7:30 A M. increased 
speed to 14 knots; reduced to 12. At 5 P. M. 
stood to southward to investigate strange steamer 
in compliance with orders from S. O. P. on Pow- 
hatan. Steamer proved to be a French destroyer. 
8 P. M. to Midnight: Steaming on course 292 de- 
grees psc. At 10 P. M., owing to heavy seas, it 
became dangerous to continue on course with sea 
ahead; changed course to 225 psc. (223 degrees 
true), bringing sea on the starboard quarter. 
Thereafter the ship rode much easier. Reid 
nearly rammed Powhatan, Lamson and Smith in 
maneuvering. Permission was requested for all 
destroyers to heave to, to rejoin convoy after 
weather moderated; request ignored. The seas 


'Barnacles" from the Log 

December 1 7 — Midnight to 4 A. M. : Steaming un- 
der Nos. 1 , 2 and 3 boilers on course 2 1 4 degrees 
psc, running before the sea; standard speed, 9 
knots. Steaming at two-thirds speed (6 knots). 
At 2:50 A. M. changed course to 208 degrees 
psc. Torpedo truck carried away and washed 
overboard during watch. 4 to 8 A. M. : Steaming 
on course 208 degrees psc. At 4:10 A. M. 
changed course to 45 degrees psc. At 5 :40 A. 
M. changed course to 208 psc. At 7 A. M. 
stopped engines to fix bearing. At 7:10 A. M. 
ahead; one-third speed (3 knots). Lost ma- 
chine lathe and wherry during watch. (Made 
requisition for new lathe, which arrived aboard 
March 27, 1919). Whaleboat smashed and ice 
box, life preserver locker and vegetable locker 
broken loose by seas breaking on board. Lost 
one life buoy light, (exploded and landed on 
deck, burning), compass binnacle light, guard to 
wheel chains (port side) and hose reel with deck 
hose. (No other ships in sight). 8 A. M. to 
Noon: Steaming as in previous watch. Having 
serious main engine bearing trouble, due to salt 
water in lubrication system. At 9 A. M. passed 
U. S. S. Corsair close aboard and asked her to 
stand by us and assist us back to Brest. (Cor- 
sair had answered our S. O. S. from nearby). 
Lost sight of Corsair at 10:30 A. M., due to rain 
squalls and heavy weather. (Note. — Foot of 
water in firemen's compartment through hatch 
wave at 3 :30 A. M., and engine room and all 
other compartments flooded; several small leaks. 
Only enough electricity left in wireless batteries 
to receive one message; none to send). Noon to 
4 P. M. : Steaming as in previous watch. At 2 :05 
P. M. changed course to 202 degrees psc. De- 
cided to seek port of refuge along coast of Portu- 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

gal, as seas and weather grew worse, with no- 
sign of moderation. (Portugal approximately 
225 miles away). 4 to 8 P. M. : Steaming as in 
previous watch on course 202 degrees psc. At 
4:15 P. M. changed course to 2 1 4 degrees. At 
5 P. M. increased speed to 7/2 knots. At 5:15 
P. M. increased speed to 8 knots and changed 
course to 202 degrees psc. Wireless apparatus 
put out of commission by salt water flooding and 
by entanglement of aerial. 8 P. M. to Mid- 
night: Steaming as in previous watch. At 9:10 
P. M. increased speed to 1 knots. 
December 1 8 — Midnight to 4 A. M. : Steaming un- 
der Nos. 1, 2 and 3 boilers on course 202 degrees 
psc; standard speed, 10 knots. 4 to 8 A. M. : 
Steaming as in previous watch. At 6:40 changed 
course to S. Yl E. 8 to Noon: Steaming as be- 
fore. At 8 :20 increased speed to 12 knots. At 
9:15 changed course to 112 degrees psc. Noon 
to 4 P. M. : As before. At 1 2 : 1 5 P. M. sighted 
land two points on port bow. At 3 :20 P. M. 
pilot came on board. At 3:33 P. M. let go port 
anchor in harbor of Port Leixoes, Portugal; 6% 
fathoms of water, 45 fathoms of chain. At 3 :40 
P. M. let go starboard anchor. At 3:55 P. M. 
secured from mooring. Draft of ship after moor- 
ing, 8 feet forward, 9 feet, 9 inches aft. 4 to 8 
P. M.: Moored as in previous watch. At 6 P. M. 
liberty party left ship (for Leixoes and Porto). 
Wireless ready for temporary duty. 8 P. M. to 
Midnight: No remarks. 

Note — The Powhatan was disabled in the Portu- 
guese storm and was forced to go into dry dock at 
Brest for repairs to her engines and steering gear. The 
Madawaska alone was able to pull through to the 
United States. The other destroyers had practically 
the same experience as the Reid. The Smith lost both 



At Brest: Ericsson (56), dishing (55), which took to 
sea the first observation balloon; Jarvis (38), after ram- 
ming Benham. At Quiberon: Hoe (24), Monaghan (32), 
Lamson (18), Smith (17). 


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ed Note condition of the ice box. 


Chief petties who thrive on pork in every kind of 
weather, and in the background, an officer fallen from 
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A broken-down French millionaire golfer whose name 
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Or, Aug. 9, 1918, the Destroyer Tucker, with 130 sur- 
vivors of the French Cruiser Dupetit Thouars aboard, 
dropped a deptli charge on a U-boat and sank it. 

'Barnacles" from the Log 

masts and a fireman overboard who was rescued after 
an hour when a sea cook swam to him with a line. 
The Smith's paint locker was staved in and her yeoman 
office was also flooded, so that lots of valuable paper 
work was destroyed. She spent about two weeks in 
dry dock at Brest. The Preston sought refuge in Lis- 
bon; likewise the Corsair, which had to have repairs 
before she could get back to base. The Roe and the 
Monaghan each lost a mast, nearer the coast. The 
Flusser and the Warrington were damaged similarly, 
and two men were reported drowned in a Panther 
liberty boat at Brest, so rough was the water inside 
the breakwater. The following entry was made Dec. 

1 7 on the 4-8 A. M. watch in the engine room log: 
"Heavy sea swept over engine room hatch at 4:30 
A. M., carrying away ventilators and lathe and flood- 
ing engine rom. Glass covering to oil manifold car- 
ried away and settling tank flooded. Salt water in lu- 
bricating oil, and bearings running warm. Too much 
water running in from sea. Impossible to keep a log." 
The log sheet for Dec. I 7 was washed down into the 
bilges and was recovered with difficulty, and on Dec. 

18 this entry was made: "Too wet to keep a log." 
The following damage was done: Wherry smashed by 
wave; captain's lifeboat banged in on both sides; ice 
box set down off supports and scuttle butt demol- 
ished, freeing steam from pipes; steam whistle pipe 
unjointed; potato and life-preserver lockers washed 
across deck to life lines; lathe washed overboard; 12 
inches of water in firemen's compartment, and all com- 
partments except forward flooded; Old Dr. Drum's 
medicines ruined aft; boat anchor, grapnel, boat bucket, 
10 emergency rations, 25 pillow type life preservers, 
I vest life preservers, a hose reel, some hose, a handy 
billy, a ventilator cowl, 2 barrels of ham, 450 pounds 
of potatoes, 300 pounds of onions and 75 pounds of 
cabbage were lost. The French called this storm the 
most severe in about 20 years, and Capt. Slayton and 
Machinist Ziemann declared it was the narrowest es- 
cape they had ever had. A number of firemen prayed 
and read the Bible on Dec. 1 7, when it appeared that 
the ship would be swamped. A sailor remarked to an 
officer: "Half the crew are ready for shore jobs, sir!" 
The "gold striper" replied "And all the officers!" 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

December 1 9 — Liberty granted to Porto. Took 
aboard 212 dozen eggs, 375 pounds onions, 500 
pounds potatoes, 450 pounds beef. 

December 20 — At 8 A. M. underway at 20 knots 
for Brest. A. J. Croft, seaman, Royal Navy, H. 
M. S. Victory, aboard as passenger. 

December 21 — At 10:50 A. M. moored at Brest. 
At 4:05 P. M. received two coal lighters along- 
side. Liberty. Moored alongside Warrington. 
Portuguese Steamer Boa Vista struck with two tor- 
pedoes near Quiberon Bay. 

December 23 (Sunday) — Ceased coaling at 12:25 
P. M., having taken aboard 260 tons of coal. 
Norwegian Steamer Spro torpedoed near Brest 
and sank in one minute, only eight survivors be- 
ing able to clear and clamber aboard the Yacht 
Emeline. The Emeline lowered a boat when the 
struggling men cried for help. 

Christmas Eve — British Destroyers 30, 34, 39, 99, 
and H-20 stood in to oil dock. Whipple, Noma 
and Truxtun stood out. 

Christmas Day — Church party 1 A. M. Football 
game in afternoon. Movies and Christmas tree 
for French children, arranged by the sailors, at 

December 28 — At 8:05 A. M. shoved off to Quibe- 
ron. Arrived Quiberon at 4 P. M. and started 
out 700 miles westward with Aeolus (flagship), 
Susquehanna, Edward Luckenback, Huron, Wy- 
andotte, Pennsylvanian and one. Accompanied 
by Lamson and Flusser. Stormy; off our course 
a bit. 

December 30 (Sunday) — Storm continued. Two 
men hurt by waves on deck. Looking for east- 
bound convoy of 20 vessels. 


"Barnacles" from the Log 



January 2 — Unable to locate convoy, so formed col- 
umn at 1 A. M. with five destroyers and steam- 
ed toward base at 9.5 knots. Wind high, 6 to 7. 

January 3 — Put into Brest with five destroyers at 

January 5 — French Steamer LeCour sunk in 45 sec- 
onds by submarine 8 miles west of Pen March, 
France, at 1 1 :30 A. M. At noon the British 
Steamer Harry Luckenback was torpedoed, and 
25 of her survivors were picked up by the Yacht 
Wanderer. No submarine was seen. 

January 6 (Sunday) — Underway at 4:13 A. M. at 
15 knots; wind 1-6. Picked up Bridge and con- 
voy at 2:11 P. M. and took position on star- 
board bow. At 7 P. M. anchored at Brest, in 
outer harbor. French Trawler St. Mathieu, 77 
miles southwest of Belle He, was attacked and 
sunk by submarine gunfire; four killed. At 1 :30 
A. M. the Steamer Dagny, in convoy of January 
5 entry, sighted submarine and blew whistle. Ten 
minutes later the ship was torpedoed, and sank in 
two minutes more. At 2 A. M. the Steamer Ka- 
naris saw the wake of a torpedo which hit her 
starboard bow; she sank rapidly. 

January 8 — Four drowned when rescuing patrol 
boat ran into life boat of St. Mathieu near La 
Pallice, France. 

January 9 — Left Brest at 4 A. M. with Warrington, 

Lamson, Roe and Smith, convoying U. S. Ss. 

Nansemond, Artemis and four others. At 7:30 

A. M. passed place where four vessels were sunk. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

At 9:15 Nansemond hoisted submarine signal 8 
miles off Pen March. Artemis shot stern gun and 
Nansemond forecastle gun 8 times. Reid, Lam- 
son, Smith and Roe raised smoke screen. Known 
as "Battle of Pen-March." Nothing but por- 
poises seen. Arrived Quiberon Bay at 5 P. M. 
and went alongside DeKalb (Prinz Eitel Fried- 
rich) and the Yacht Guinevere. McNeal along- 
January 1 — Left Quiberon 8 A. M. with destroy- 
ers, convoying DeKalb, Huron and eight other 
vessels westward. Twelve knots. 

January 1 1 — Wind 2-8. Left convoy about 10 A. 
M. and headed for rendezvous. At 12 :50 P. M. 
wireless carried away by wind and storm. At 
2 :30 P. M. rigged up temporary aerial. Wind 
and seas increasing. Must have missed convoy, 
so headed toward base. 

January 1 2 — Nearly ran into lighthouse in fog and 
signalled Flusser to change course. Tied up 
alongside Roe at noon; Smith, Lamson, Flusser, 
Warrington, and Monaghan also at Buoy 1 4. 

January 17 — At 2:30 P. M. Reid, Flusser, Smith 
and Lamson stood out, convoying President Lin- 
coln, Covington and Pocahontas toward states at 
1 knots. 

January 18 — Left convoy at 2:30 A. M. Trip 
rough and lockers full of water. At 8 joined 
eastbound convoy; zig-zagging at 12.5 knots. 

January 1 9 — Arrived Brest 9 A. M. and went along- 
side Truxtun and Panther. Flusser moored along- 
side Reid's port side. 

January 21 — Reid's orders changed. Ralph D. 
Paine, the author, came aboard to make sea trip. 
Preston towed from navy yard. 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

January 22 — At 3:30 P. M. left Brest to convoy 
President Grant, Praetorius and two others to- 
ward States. Speed 14 knots; zig-zagging. Mr. 
Paine helping to con. 

January 23 — Storm started; wind 4 to 7. Mr. 
Paine quit bridge for skipper's bunk. Left con- 
voy at 7 P. M. and headed toward Brest. Two 
men nearly washed overboard. Changed course 
to ride easier. 

January 24 — Dropped depth charges, two failing 
to explode. Speeded up to 18 knots and ar- 
rived at Brest, alongside Smith, at noon. Pres- 
ton, Warrington, Lamson and Monaghan stood 

January 27 (Sunday) — Reid, Lamson, Preston and 
Flusser underway at midnight under four boilers; 
20 knots. Preston broke down and returned to 
base. Yacht Guinevere went on reef one mile 
east of Pte. de Talut, France; officers and crew 
abandoned her and landed at Lorient. 

January 28 — At 8 A. M. steamed into harbor of 
Plymouth, Eng. At 9 picked up Montanan and 
Amphion (both U. S., and heavily loaded), and 
convoyed southward; 14 knots. 

January 29— Eleven knots. At 1 :54 A. M. Monta- 
nan fired two shots to port, astern of Reid. Went 
to general quarters, but saw nothing and came 
back to course. At 3 :24 A. M. Montanan and 
Amphion fired three shots each. At 1 :47 P. M. 
let go starboard anchor in Quiberon Bay. At 
3:02 P. M. underway with convoy. At 4:48 
P. M. Belle lie seven miles. At 8:10 P. M. 
moon rose. 

January 30 — At 1 :58 P. M. left convoy and headed 
for Brest at 1 8 knots. At 2 : 1 7 P. M. turned to 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

resume position with convoy. At 8 P. M. left 
convoy; hit up 18 knots. 

January 31 — Sighted land at 9:25 A. M. on port 
bow. At 1 1 A. M. Reid and Preston moored to 

February 6 — U. S. S. Tenadores stood in. Reid un- 
derway at noon; 20 knots; with Monaghan and 
Lamson. At 7 P. M. anchored Quiberon Bay. 

February 7 — At 1 P. M. underway with Lamson 
and Monaghan, convoying U. S. Ss. Nyanza and 
Kentuckian; 1 1 knots. 

February 8 — At 7:30 P. M. left convoy and pro- 
ceeded with Lamson and Monaghan toward base 
at 20 knots. 

February 9 — Arrived at Brest at 1 1 A. M. 

February 12 — Nicholson stood in. At 4:35 P. M. 
Reid, Lamson and Monaghan left to convoy Ten- 
adores and Huron westward. Fine weather; 14 

February 1 4 — At 8 :25 A. M. left convoy and with 
Lamson and Monaghan headed for Brest; 18.5 
knots. At 4 dropped two Sperry depth charges 
to see if they would explode; one did. 

February 1 5 — Passed convoy of 1 6 vessels. At 9 
A. M. passed Destroyer Sampson (63) and sev- 
eral other oil-burners returning to Queenstown 
after convoying Wilhelmina and other transports 
in. Tied up at 11 A. M. alongside Smith. 

February 1 9 — British submarine C-5 stood in and 
went to oil dock. Smith, Warrington, Reid, Nich- 
olson, Lamson, Preston and Flusser convoying 
Powhatan, Ohioan, Aeolus and Calamares toward 
states; trip smooth, speed, 13.5 knots. 

February 20 — Left convoy at 8:30 P. M. and turn- 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

ed south to join east-bound convoy at rendez- 

February 23 — French Pilot, Monsieur Paul LeDan- 
tec, sighted lighthouse at 4 P. M. Passed quan- 
tity of driftwood, some painted white, and four 
barrels or kegs. Felt explosion as of depth 
charge from another ship; unable to fathom trou- 
ble. Tied up at Quiberon at 8 P. M. and bor- 
rowed a sack of potatoes from the Mexican. 

February 24 (Sunday) — Delivered sealed orders to 
Charlton Hall and Santiago, then underway at 
6:30 A. M. with division at 20 knots for Brest. 

February 25 — Put on 180 tons of coal up to 4 P. 

March 1 — Yacht Isabel stood in. At 3:30 P. M. 
Reid, Roe, Monaghan, Lamson and Preston stood 
out, convoying Agamemnon, Von Steuben, Tiger 
and Martha Washington west toward States. 

March 2 — Received several SOS messages say- 
ing ships in course were being shelled by subma- 
rines. At 5 P. M. Lamson left convoy for dry 
dock at Chatham, England. At 7:30 P. M. 
Reid and Preston left Tiger and Martha Wash- 
ington and steamed southward toward rendez- 
vous; 12 knots. 

March 3 (Sunday) — At daylight joined Wilkes 
(67 — flagship), Roe, Monaghan, O'Brien (51), 
and eleven other destroyers with eight American 
ships, some with troops, some munitions. Ex- 
changed signals with Wilkes and Covington. 

March 4 — At 6:40 A. M. joined by Smith. At 1 1 
A. M. moored alongside Panther. 

March 9 — Whipple and Nokomis stood out; Stewart 
stood in. At 4 P. M. Smith and Reid left Brest 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

and at 6 P. M. anchored in Anse de Camaret to 
spend the night. 

March 10 (Sunday) — Left Camaret at 7 A. M. with 
Smith, convoying President Grant and President 
Lincoln toward United States. At 10:10 A. M. 
met Cruiser Seattle (with Secretary of War Baker 
aboard, accompanied by troopships and destroy- 
ers) ; joined Seattle convoy and arrived at Brest 
1 1 :35 A. M; speed, 18 knots. At 3 P. M. un- 
derway with Smith, Isabel, and Warrington, con- 
voying Covington and George Washington at 
1 6.5 knots, and troops on ships at anchor cheered 
us. Rough. 

March 1 1 — Left convoy at dark and headed into 
light rain-squall. Steaming at 20 knots for Brest. 

March 12 — At 3:30 P. M. arrived Brest and went 
alongside Flusser. Seattle still in harbor. Pilot 
M. Renault, succeeding Monsieur Le Dantec, re- 
ported aboard. 

March 1 6 — Smith, Roe and Drayton stood in. At 
4 P. M. left with Warrington, Isabel and Flusser, 
convoying Seattle, Rappahannock and President 
Grant westward. 

March 1 7 (Sunday; St. Patrick's Day) — Irish mem- 
bers of crew put on green. About noon left con- 
voy and went after eastbound convoy with Isabel. 
Rough. Had turbine trouble and "lay to" 40 
minutes. At 3:45 P. M. sighted convoy and ex- 
changed signals with Scout Cruiser Chester. At 9 
P. M. left convoy and hit up 18.5 knots for Brest 
with Isabel. 

March 18 — At 8:30 A. M. passed British Tramp 
Steamer Roath. At 1 1 :55 A. M. sighted subma- 
rine steaming on surface three miles ahead trail- 
ing small French tramp steamer. Reid dropped 
three depth charges and Isabel one. Circled for 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

hour, then preceeded to Brest. Position of sub- 
marine, 47-58 North, 05-34 West, about 40 miles 
west of base. 

March 2 1 — Drayton stood in. Roe and Jarvis 
stood out. Seaman J. A. Robbins fell 18 feet to 
deck from boatswain's chair when wire bridle 
broke and was taken unconscious to Panther sick 
bay. At 3:30 P. M. Reid got underway. 

March 22 — Steaming in scouting line of five miles. 
At 9:45 A. M. joined convoy and executed ships 
about. At noon fog lifted. Speed of convoy, 6 
to 8 knots. 

March 23 — At 9 A. M. convoy separated, British 
vessels going southeast and Americans continuing 
on course eastward. Calm and pleasant. War- 
rington, Monaghan and Roe joined from east. 
Smith and Flusser went back to pick up French 
birdman whose machine had fallen in sea. Moor- 
ed at Brest 1:10 P. M. alongside Flusser and 

March 28 — Left Brest 6 A. M. with Preston, Flus- 
ser and Jarvis. At noon anchored at Quiberon 
in 9.5 fathoms of water. At 2 P. M. command- 
ing officers of Reid, Madawaska, Kroonland, Man- 
churia and Neches went to Madawaska in Jarvis 
motor boat for conference. Underway at 

4:30 P. M. convoying above ships. Rough 

March 29 — Moonlight; cold. At 8 P. M. left con- 
voy and went north, and Preston, Jarvis and Flus- 
ser fell into column on Reid. Speed 12.5; wind 

March 30 — As before. At 6:30 A. M. made con- 
tact with eastbound convoy of 20 ships, mostly 
British, escorted by ten destroyers — French, Brit- 
ish and American. 







KEY: 1 — Finland torpedoed. 2 — Antilles sunk. 3 — Al- 
cedo sunk. 4 — "Battle of Pen-March." 5 — Course of 
U-48 to Ferrol, Spain. 6 — Attack on U-48. 7 — Neches 
and steamer sunk in collision. 8 — Wakiva sunk by Wa- 
bash. 9 — President Lincoln sunk. 10 — Covington sunk. 
11 — Florence H. disaster. 12 — Tippecanoe sunk. 13 — 
Westward-Ho torpedoed. 14 — Cubore sunk. 15 — West 
Bridge torpedoed. 16 — Montanan sunk. 17 — Finland- 
Henderson collision. 18 — Stewart sank submarine. 19 — 
Tucker picked up survivors of French Cruiser Dupetit 
Thouars and sank submarine. (All positions approximate). 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

March 31 (Easter Sunday) — Making ten knots; oc- 
casional squalls, high sea and low visibility ob- 
scuring convoy. Sighted land at 7 A. M. and 
entered Brest outer harbor at 1 1 A. M. 

April 1 (All Fools Day) — Bill Ayles, ship's cook, 
wrote a new poem. Liberty from 4 to 9 P. M. 
Drayton and Wadsworth stood out. Gunner 
Johnson toured French shops looking for bird 
seed for canaries. 

April 2 — Captain Slayton and Lieutenant Good re- 
viewed "Volume I" of crew's book. At 8 A. M. 
held life preserver inspection. Macdonough 
stood out; Smith in. 

April 3 — Crew coaling in rain from lighters; 143 
tons aboard at 7 P. M. Phonograph playing in 
forward compartment. Lamson stood in. Mat- 
sonia and Henderson stood out; also Flusser, Roe, 
Monaghan, Lamson, Worden and Jarvis. Re- 
ceived 50 vest life preservers from Panther. Reid 
left Brest at 4 P. M. and anchored in harbor of 
Camaret, 1 miles to south. 

April 4 — Left Anse de Camaret at 6 A. M. (day- 
light) with Isabel as flagship and Jarvis. Isabel, 
Smith and Preston located Olympic, and Reid 
and O'Brien joined. Set speed at 27 knots in 
zig-zag and 22 knots straight ahead. Arrived 
Brest 7 P. M. with about 8,000 American troops 
on Olympic. 

April 5 — Flusser stood in. At daylight Wadsworth, 
(flagship), Macdonough, Reid, Drayton, Nichol- 
son, Jarvis and Preston left in column to meet 
Northern Pacific, Von Steuben and Mt. Vernon 
350 miles at sea, all full of American troops. 
Making 12 knots. 

April 6 — Made speed 20 knots and met convoy at 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

daylight. Preston broke down at noon and fell 
behind, making only 1 knots. 

April 7 (Sunday) — Intercepted wireless message 
(SOS) : "Port Campbell torpedoed. Port Camp- 
bell torpedoed. Port Campbell — — — — ". 
No position given. Reid on port bow of convoy. 
At 5:52 A. M. sighted Creach Light on port bow. 
At 5:55 A. M. sighted Ar Men Light on starboard 
bow. Arrived at Brest 9 A. M. and tied up to 

April 9 — At 8:55 A. M. Lamson came in with story 
of attack on submarine April 5, 1:20 P. M. ; 
U-boat's conning tower seen three miles away 
and depth charges were dropped; Monaghan and 
Roe also present. 

April 1 — "Heinie" Good left Brest for Washington 
duty ; gave the crew the glad hand and received a 
cheer. Smith, Wadsworth, Jarvis and Stewart 
stood in. At 4 P. M. Reid, Preston and Drayton 
left Brest for Le Verdon, Gironde River, near 

April 1 1 — Arrived Le Verdon at 1 A. M. and was 
met by two balloons. Strong tide flowing out. 
Met Powhatan (flagship) and Martha Washington 
and at 6 P. M. escorted them to sea. 

April 1 2 — As before with Powhatan and Martha 
Washington. Dave Curran, boatswain's mate, 
reported two seagulls as periscopes and was or- 
dered below. At 1 : 1 5 A. M. Martha Washing- 
ton hoisted submarine warning flag to port and 
changed course to starboard. Destroyers stop- 
ped zig-zagging and steered north magnetic. 
Sighted oil slick running northwest and southeast. 
Drayton, on port wing of escort, stood toward 
slick, but failed to find anything. 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

April 13 — At 8 A. M. left Powhatan and Martha 
Washington and headed north to join Northern 
Pacific (flagship), Agamemnon and America with 

April 14 (Sunday) — At 8 A. M. joined Northern 
Pacific, Agamemnon and America; Wadsworth 
(flag) leading in column. Also joined by Nich- 
olson and Smith. At 4 P. M. sighted two square 
riggers escorted by French destroyer, and passed 
convoy. Very bad night; at 1 1 P. M. lost convoy 
and steered base course. 

April 1 5 — Picked up convoy and destroyers at 7 A. 
M. At 7:45 A. M. steering gear jammed and we 
steered by hand from after station. At 9 passed 
convoy c f 1 6 ships, escorted. At 1 steering gear 
jammed again and Reid was nearly rammed by 
Agamemnon. Ran up break-down flag; under- 
way in half hour at 1 7 knots and caught convoy. 
Arrived Brest 1 P. M. with 46 tons of coal. Wads- 
worth and Nicholson stood in; Truxtun stood out. 
Lieutenant (jiggy-jig) Jas. H. Smith, Jr., USNRF., 
reported aboard for duty from Lorient and Gui- 
nevere. Bailleul lost to Allies. U-108, newly 
commissioned, left base on first cruise in Atlantic, 
via north of Scotland and west of Ireland to Brest 
assignment. Soon afterward was attacked at en- 
trance to Brest Channel by Destroyer Porter. Se- 
riously damaged by Porter's depth charges, she 
was forced to return to base via the Shetland and 
Orkney Islands; three weeks out with only one op- 
portunity to fire a torpedo, and that without a 
hit. (From a report made by Admiral Henry 
B. Wilson). 

April 16 — At 7:30 A. M. French Tug Hanneton 
towed us to coal dock to coal, slipped towing line 
and ran us bow-on into coal dock. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

April 17 — At 2:30 P. M. French naval officers in- 
spected Reid's damaged bow. U. S. S. Florence 
H. blown up in Quiberon Bay; 34 out of crew of 
80 reported saved by destroyers. 

April 20 — Fire in paint locker caused by bow weld- 
ing. Crew subscribed more than $4,000 for lib- 
erty bonds, setting record for all ships at base. 

April 22 — At 5 P. M. Drayton, Smith and Reid 
stood out convoying America toward States; 18 
knots. Reid leaking in eyes of ship. 

April 23 — At 4 A. M. left America 200 miles out 
and headed north. At 7 A. M. made contact 
with 30 merchant vessels, escorted by British des- 
troyers. Passed bannister post, keg, box, planks 
and an orange. Speed 10 knots; zigging. In- 
tercepted long wireless message written in Ger- 
man. At 1 : 1 P M. convoy separated, Reid, 
Warrington, Drayton, Smith and Lamson contin- 
uing with Brest division. Manxman present; other 
names not known. Two American hydroplanes 
and a destroyer attacked a submarine off Pen 
March, France; dropped explosives and brought 
oil and cork to the surface. 

April 24 — At 2 A. M. lookout discovered large rat 
trying to effect entrance to wardroom through 
passageway. Headed him back to ice box and 
reported affair to executive officer. Put search 
light on steamer with motor trucks to force her 
into column formation. At Brest in fog 6 A. M. 
Destroyer Stewart, escorting 1 5 ships near Qui- 
beron Bay, sighted two American aviators drop- 
ping smoke bombs. Conning tower of submarine 
was observed 3,000 yards away, and an object 
was seen breaking the water at the end of a wake. 


'Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

Stewart saw U-boat in clear water and dropped 
two depth charges, on either side of the U-boat 
and within 50 feet of it. The charges brought up 
columns of water and heavy oil patches, and 
a thick red substance and some debris were seen. 
A submarine star was awarded the Stewart. 

April 26 — Destroyer Stewart rammed in fog near 
Brest by French steamer. Harvard stood by her 
and she was towed to Brest. 

April 29 — Drayton and Smith stood out at 2:45 
P. M. At 4:45 P. M. Reid, Isabel and Lamson 
stood out to convoy Pocahontas westward. 

April 30 — Smith and Drayton joined at 7 A. M. 
Intercepted more German wireless messages. 
Speed 15 knots. When 200 miles out, curlew 
flew to deck and was captured by David Reyes, 
wardroom steward. Left Pocahontas at 8 P. IVl! 
and sped northward for rendezvous to meet east- 
bound convoy. 

May 1 — Firing off the Irish Coast reported by radio. 
At 1 P. M. sighted oil slick. Went to general 
quarters and Drayton dropped one depth charge. 
Nothing seen. At 3 P. M. picked up largest con- 
voy yet — 34 vessels, making nine knots. Passed 
quantity of driftwood sighted by Ensign Wilson. 
Germans captured Sebastopol, Russia. 

May 2 — Convoy separated, 1 2 vessels proceeding 
with us to Brest. Wireless intercepted requesting 
extra deep anchorage, and we concluded Levia- 
than (Vaterland) was putting in. Arrived Brest 
4 P. M. ; passed near Leviathan, full of troops, 
some shoving off on liberty. 

May 4 — Continued coaling at midnight and finished 
at 1 :30 A. M. ; 1 78 tons aboard. 

May 5 (Sunday) — Roe stood in. Church party 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

9:30 A. M. to 12:30 P. M. At 7 P. M. left Brest 
with Isabel, Smith, Lamson and Drayton, convoy- 
ing Leviathan homeward. Reid dropped out at 
Camaret, anchored, and other destroyers contin- 
ued with Leviathan. 

May 6 — At 3 A. M. underway at 21 knots outside 
to meet eastbound convoy. At 6 A. M. picked 
up Mercury, Henderson, Siboney, escorted by 
Allen (66), Ammen (35), Wilkes and Terry and 
four aeroplanes and a dirigible. Transports full 
of troops, as usual, and some sailors in old destroy- 
er drafts. Tied up at Brest at 8 P. M. 

May 7 — Heard of wireless message submarine com- 
mander sent captain of Gunboat Castine: "You 
are doing great work, but for heaven's sake tighten 
up your loose propeller blade. It makes us ner- 
vous." Out again at 4 P. M. with Isabel and Pres- 
ton convoying British Steamer Czaritza; 12 knots; 
calm and pleasant. 

May 8 — Left convoy at 7 P. M. and steamed north- 
ward to meet new convoy of 34 vessels. Column 
order, — Isabel (flag), Preston, Reid. At 9:40 
P. M. lost contact with Isabel and Preston. 

May 9 — At 6 A. M. made contact with Isabel and 
Preston, and picked up convoy. Request of SOP 
of merchant vessel for smoke screen on joining 
was ignored. Wireless warned of submarine op- 
erating north of Brest, and skipper made note to 
expect it in path May 1 at 7 A. M. Message 
also said most channels to Brest were closed on 
account of submarine operating close to shore and 
warned of mine fields. British staged second na- 
val raid on Ostend. 

May 1 — Rumored we were passing through mine 
field, so most of crew left forecastle and perched 
on deck. Hailed Steamer River Otranto and or- 




On May 27, 1918, twelve 5-ineh "Big Bertha" shells hit 
Paris from St. Gobain Forest, 67 miles to the northeast. 
The above shell landed one block from Montparnasse, 
station for Brest. [241] 

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shell aimed at Notre Dame Cathedral or Hotel de Ville. 

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Mademoiselle is busy nursing her heroic countrymen 
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Louis XIV at Versailles, but pauses for a picture. 

On Saturday, May 25, 1918, the Reid was docked at the 
French Navy Yard, Brest. One of the main jobs was to 
scrape the barnacle-covered bottom, by all hands. 

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"Barnacles'' from the Log (continued) 

dered her to slow down to 9 knots. Assigned 
anchorage to merchant ships. At 3 P. M. tied up 
to Lamson. 

May 1 5 — At 6 A. M. left Brest with Lamson, Pres- 
ton and five other destroyers convoying H. M. S. 
Czar at 1 2 knots towed Quiberon. At 9 : 1 A. M. 
passing steamer shot gun three times. Circled 
but saw nothing. Passed wreckage of Yacht 
Guinevere and Steamer Florence H. (Lucken- 
back), and were met by aeroplanes. Arrived 
Quiberon at 7 P. M. Saw mysterious flashes in 
sky, two hours, followed by explosions as of big 
guns. Left convoying H. M. S. Czar and City of 
Atlanta; 13 knots. 

May 1 6 — Passed much wreckage, barrels and oil 
slicks, and received message submarine was oper- 
ating outside Brest. Left convoy at 1 P. M. 
and steamed in column on Lamson (flag), with 
Preston trailing; proceeding on duty assigned. 

May 1 7 — At 7 A. M. made contact with convoy 
and took position well ahead. At 9 A. M. pass- 
ed corpse of man in dark clothes and gray lite 
preserver, face downward; 100 feet off starboard 
side. Sighted more wreckage, and received mes- 
sages from two sources warning against subma- 
rine 80 miles west of Brest in our course, which 
had just sunk two steamers. At 1 P. M. part of 
convoy headed toward England. One Lucken- 
back ship in our convoy. 

May 1 8— At 8 :30 A. M. tied up at Brest. At 11 : 30 
paymaster paid crew; then crew coaled ship. 

May 20 — At 5 A. M. got underway with Flusser 
and Jarvis for Quiberon Bay. Arrived Quiberon 
at 1 1 A. M. Escorted Finland, Kroonland and 
Ohioan out toward States; 13 knots, smooth sea. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Near midnight hit fog bank, changed course and 
lost convoy. 

May 2 1 — Back with, convoy at 5 A. M. when fog 
lifted. Then left convoy with Isabel and picked 
up eastbound convoy of twelve vessels, includ- 
ing Nokomis with Yacht Noma in charge. Held 
general quarters on receiving report of periscope; 
nothing but blackfish, of which there were many. 
At 5 : 1 5 P. M. fog bank obscured convoy. Yacht 
Christabel, escorting convoy along coast, sighted 
a periscope on her starboard beam; distance, 300 
yards. Several depth charges set at 70 feet were 
exploded. When the second had functioned there 
was a violent third explosion which sent up an 
enormous quantity of water. The surface of the 
water for a radius of 1 00 feet was found to be 
covered with air bubbles, black oil and pieces of 
wood, evidence that the yacht had sunk or dam- 
aged a submarine (U-56?). The Christabel was 
awarded a star on her funnel for the exploit. 

May 22 — At 3 A. M. Yacht Wakiva II was rammed 
in fog by U. S. Steamer Wabash in position 46-2 1 
N. 02-50 W. Sent SOS: "Sinking slowly; unable 
to receive any signals." Lieutenant Davidson, 
Reid's executive officer, wanted to dash to aid, 
about 40 miles away, but skipper said it was im- 
possible. Her survivors picked up by American 
yacht. Went into LaPallice and brought some 
ships out. Anchored in fog with nine fathoms of 
chain, on order of senior naval officer. Noma 
anchored off our port bow, near Royan. Left 
convoy at 5 A. M. and hit up 22 knots for Brest. 
Held target practice and knocked down target 
at 1500 yards on third shot. Put on 24 knots 
and arrived Brest 5:30 P. M., time for liberty. 
Yacht Christabel dropped depth charges on an oil 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

slick. Three hours later a submarine appeared 
near the convoy and the Christabel dropped two 
more depth charges, bringing heavy oil bubbles 
and bits of splintered driftwood to the surface. 
A sympathetic explosion followed the second 
depth charge, thought to have come from within 
the submarine. 

May 26 (Sunday) — Captain Slayton left ship and 
was cheered by crew. Reid towed from Panther 
to dry dock. Panther workmen busy on dam- 
aged bow. Crew taking down rigging. 

May 27 — At 6 A. M. "Big Bertha" started shelling 
Paris, announcing resumption of big German 
land offensive in the west, with Paris as objective. 
Twelve shells hit the capital. 

May 29 — "Big Bertha" dropped six shells into Paris. 
Soissons captured by the Germans; Rheims held. 

May 31 — President Lincoln torpedoed and sunk 
about 500 miles west of Brest by lurking subma- 
rine after destroyers had left her. Germans again 
reached the Marne River. 

June 2 (Sunday) — Survivors of President Lincoln 
disaster put into Brest, ambulances from Base 
Hospital No. 5 taking care of the wounded. 

June 5 — La Depeche, Brest newspaper, reported 
German submarine off American coast and large 
cities darkened at night. 

July 1 — At 11 A. M. the Reid and six other des- 
troyers left Brest convoying the Transport Cov- 
ington and seven other troopships westward. At 
9:10 P. M. the Covington was torpedoed ; posi- 
tion, Lat. 47-24 N., Long. 07-44 W. 

July 2— At 2 :32 P. M., G. M. T., Covington sank, 
having been towed 25 to 40 miles. Reid and 
other destroyers returned to Brest. 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

July 3 — Reid stood out to sea with companion de- 

Fourth of July — Steaming west at 1 5 knots, looking 
for eastbound convoy. At 4:04 P. M. sighted 
Jarvis. At 6:40 P. M. took position on starboard 
quarter of Pocahontas, Manhattan, Susquehanna, 
Re D'ltalia, Due D'Aosta (Italian), and French 
Transports Patria and Nopatin, filled with troops. 
At 8 P. M. lookout reported submarine, and 
"alio" was received. At 8:30 P. M. Benham re- 
ported seeing three feet of periscope seven miles 
ahead of convoy and dropping 1 8 depth charges. 

At 10:25 P. M., Lat. 46-22 N., Long. 06-54 W., 
while patrolling on starboard quarter of convoy, 
Reid sighted suspicious wake running towards 
convoy. Went to general quarters and at 1 8 
knots crossed wake to get between it and convoy. 
Followed wake to what appeared as its head 
where was large patch of smooth, unrippled wa- 
ter. Captain Davidson laid depth barrage of 8 
mines, turning with 1 degrees right rudder, cir- 
cling around and across wake. Came back to 
direction of wake towards convoy and proceeded 
about 1,000 yards ahead in direction of wake and 
laid line of three more depth charges. Searched 
vicinity, but found nothing. Result doubtful. 
All depth charges functioned well. Rejoined 
convoy at midnight. Little SOP. 

July 5 — At noon put into Brest with convoy as 
above and with Little (senior), Shaw, Wads- 
worth, Porter, Conner, Jarvis, Benham, Isabel, 
Cummings and others. 

July 8 — At 4:15 A. M. Birmingham stood out; also 

Lamson, Fanning, Wainwright, Drayton, O'Brien, 

Burrows, Porter, Pocahontas and Monaghan. All 

hands cleaned and painted ship. At 4 :45 P. M. 


"Barnacles" from the Log (c ontinued ) 

out: Reid, Warrington, Sigourney (flag), Nichol- 
son, Benham, Tucker, Jarvis and Cummings, con- 
voying at 1 3 knots Pocahontas (flag), Gold Shell, 
Susquehanna, Czaritza, Re D' Italia and Due 

July 9 — Wind 3-5 ; Reid astern of homeward-bound 
convoy. At 10:13 A. M. exchanged positions 
with Cummings, taking port beam. At 10:14 A. 
M. Sigourney, Tucker, Cummings and Benham 
circled on starboard quarter of convoy, dropping 
depth charges. 

July 10 — At 10 A. M. sighted large hospital ship 
on starboard bow steering southerly course. At 
5 P. M. passed American steamer steering to 
eastward. At 9:20 P. M. left convoy and formed 
column on Sigourney; 16 knots; wind 3-6. 

July 1 1 — At 5:30 A. M. joined eastbound convoy 
at rendezvous: President Grant, Calamares, 
Magnolia (Mongolia?) and others. The West- 
over, of the Naval Overseas Transportation Serv- 
ice, torpedoed twice near Brest; eleven men lost; 
five boatloads of survivors landed at Morlaix, 

July 12 — As before. At 1 1 :55 A. M. ship on left 
hoisted break-down flag and dropped astern. At 
10:35 P. M. entered Brest Harbor with convoy 
and destroyers and went alongside Lamson. 

July 14 (Sunday)— At 7:30 A. M. French Steamer 
Patria left anchorage. At 8 A. M. full dressed 
ship, with ensign at mainmast, celebrating birth of 
the French Republic. 

July 1 6 — Underway at 6 P. M. convoying George 
Washington (?) and H. M. Ss. Czar and Roepat, 
Vauban, Ohioan and Mercury, in company with 
Nicholson (flag), Flusser, Smith and Lamson; 15 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

July 1 7 — Blowing up rougher. At 6 A. M. Lamson 
joined convoy of 36 vessels, including destroyers; 
9 knots. At 6:05 A. M. Nicholson hoisted sub- 
marine warning flag and opened fire with 4-inch 
guns on her starboard bow. Reid went to gen- 
eral quarters and put on 21 knots; gave right 
rudder and dropped depth charges at intervals 
of 1 seconds. At 6 : 1 A. M. observed torpedo 
broaching on surface (or submarine) approach- 
ing spot on which Nicholson's gunfire was center- 
ed. Gave hard right rudder to avoid object and 
circled spot, dropping 18 depth charges; last 
charge set off sympathetic explosion that was 
thought to have come from spent torpedo of sub- 
marine. At 9:15 P. M. Reid, Nicholson, Lam- 
son and Flusser left convoy. 

July 1 8 — At 4 : 1 A. M. sighted British destroyers. 
At 5:45 A. M. joined eastbound convoy and took 
position on starboard beam; 1 1 knots. At 
10:30 A. M. heard two shots fired on left of con- 
voy; nothing definite seen. Gen. Foch launched 
big Allied counter attack. 

July 1 9 — At 11 A. M. convoy and destroyers tied 
up at Brest, Reid alongside Smith and Panther. 

July 22 — Flusser stood in, "buckled up," trying to 
step out too fast ahead of the Mt. Vernon. Ru- 
mor said Burrows lost a chief gunner's mate and 
Warrington a man overboard in storm just en- 
countered. Benham was towed in by tugs in 
sinking condition, having been rammed on star- 
board side by Jarvis in fog. Allied drive con- 
tinued between Chateau-Thierry and Soissons; 
20,000 prisoners. 

July 23 — At 1 1 :45 A. M. Jarvis was towed in, her 
bow badly smashed in collision with Benham. 
Cruiser San Diego sunk off U. S. coast by mine 


"Barnacles" from the Log (continued) 

At 6 P. M. left Brest with Fanning, Burrows, Cum- 
mings and Nicholson, convoying President Grant; 
12-14 knots. 
July 25 — At 1 A. M. sighted two ships on port bow 
and reported same by flag hoist. At 9 A. M. re- 
ceived SOS saying U. S. S. Tippecanoe was tor- 
pedoed 40-60 miles away; one position 44-36 N., 
16-52 W. At 10 A. M. raced to scene, Fanning 
and Conner searching from other directions. At 
2 P. M. sighted empty life boat and tin cask; off 
course. At 3 P. M. Conner picked up 60-70 
survivors of Tippecanoe and turned toward Brest. 
Conner and Reid put on 26 knots chasing after 
submarine reported shelling British Ship Zamora 
in course, 60 miles away. Nothing seen, not 
even Zamora. 

July 26 — Trailing Conner at 20 knots; coal low. 
Fanning went ahead, oil low. Arrived at Brest 
4:30 P. M. 

August 1 — Moored alongside Warfish. All hands 
up at 6 A. M. Reid, Cushing and other destroyers 
left at 7 P. M. with convoy going west, Cushing 
carrying first captive observation balloon to be 
used to spot submarines off the French Coast. 

August 2 — Observation balloon went up at 4:50 A. 
M. Destroyers making 1 3 knots. Soissons wrest- 
ed by Allies from Germans. 

August 3 — Continued rough. Left convoy at 9:30 
P. M. after stay of 5 1 hours and steamed at 1 8 
knots with Wadsworth and Monaghan to meet 
New York convoy at rendezvous. Monaghan 
broke breakdown flag for five minutes. 

August 4 (Sunday) — Wadsworth sighted convoy 
and all joined at 9 A. M., including Drayton, 
Winslow, Nicholson, Warrington, Conner, Sus- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

quehanna (flag), Finland, Kroonland, Dante 
Alighieri and three others. 

August 5 — At 5:10 A. M. sighted westbound con- 
voy. At 5 P. M. held gun drill. "My God — 
WHAT stupidity!" cried Lieutenant Smith as fore- 
castle gun crew trained on wrong target. At 
10:30 P. M. Finland reported man overboard 
and threw off flaming buoy, but did not stop. 
Reid and Roe searched for an hour without find- 
ing anything, then rejoined convoy at 18 knots. 

August 6 — Wireless from Brest warned us to look 
out for submarine operating in one of the chan- 
nels close to land, so convoy and escort went out 
of the way; no trace of submarine. At 1 1 A. M. 
Monaghan reported sighting floating mine; shot 
it with gun. Arrived in outer harbor at 5 P. M. 
where Reid steamed around for two hours, then 
gave 7 P. M. liberty. Heard story that on day 
before, Preston, out of coal, burned boots filled 
with oil to make port. 

August 8 — Three men left for States to man new 
destroyer and six left on Paris leave. Preston 
stood out; La France (largest French transport). 
Pocahontas, Sigourney, Nicholson, Cushing 
Wadsworth, Burrows, O'Brien, Drayton, Wan- 
derer, Macdonough and Emeline stood in. West- 
ward-Ho torpedoed about 200 miles west of 
Brest; floating well. British launched fierce at- 
tack at Amiens. 


"Barnacles" from the Log 


August 9— At 3 P. M. left with Little (flag), Wads- 
worth, Flusser, Preston and Monaghan convoying 
Dante Alighieri and four (probably Finland, 
Kroonland, Susquehanna and one) ; 1 4 knots. 
Destroyer Tucker picked up 130 survivors of 
French Cruiser Dupetit-Thouars, torpedoed about 
position Lat. 46 N., Long. 18 W., and sank sub- 
marine 600 miles west of Brest. The periscope 
was sighted at 800 yards and the Tucker dropped 
two depth charges 200 yards beyond the point of 
submergence, then kicked off 1 4 in a circle, after 
which the bow of the submarine broached on the 
surface and the Tucker fired four blunt-nosed 
shells, two taking effect. The submarine again 
submerged and the Tucker passed over the spot, 
sighting the U-boat at a depth of 20 feet and 
dropping two additional depth charges, set at 1 50 
and 200 feet, squarely over the enemy. Oil ap- 
peared on the surface. French officers and men 
declared there could be no doubt that the Tucker 
sank this U-boat, and a star was allowed when the 
destroyer's claim was filed. The Destroyer Fan- 
ning dropped seven depth charges in this action. 

August 1 — At 9 A. M. condensers started leaking 
and salt going into boilers, so Reid got permission 
to return to base. Received several radio mes- 
sages from Westward-Ho, which was 60 miles to 
south, saying vessel was still afloat and was back- 
ing toward port under her own steam. Rumor 
said "Pen-March Pete" had slipped out of Spain 
and was laying "eggs" along the coast again, so 
brushed by Pen-March Point to give him a chance. 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Arrived at Brest at midnight and tied up to the 
Prometheus for the first time. 

August 1 1 (Sunday)— At 1 1 :30 A. M. Leviathan, 
Northern Pacific, Great Northern, Sigourney, Mc- 
Dougal, Burrows, Parker, Nicholson, Lamson and 
Smith in; Smith out. At 6 P. M. Westward -Ho 
backed in under her own power, with bow low in 
water; cargo of aeroplanes, trucks, munitions 
and hay; only one per cent of "floatability." 

August 13 — Crew coaled ship until noon, taking 
aboard 45 tons. Ensign Wilson left for Paris on 
7-day leave. Sigourney stood out to sea. At 4 
P. M. Reid got under way with Lamson for Bor- 
deaux; water smooth. 

August 14 — Early met convoy of 30 merchant ves- 
sels in charge of Yachts Aphrodite (senior), 
Noma and Corsair; bound for United States. 

August 1 5 — Left westbound convoy and picked 
up 17 merchant vessels from the United States, 
bound for French ports. Sea still smooth and 
weather fair. At 7 P. M. the American Steamer 
Montanan, of the Hawaiian-American Line, was 
torpedoed in position approximately Lat. 46-40 
N., Long. 12-25 W. Her 81 survivors took to 
life boats and were picked up by the Yacht 
Noma. A radio message was received saying a 
torpedo had passed under the stern of another 
vessel in the convoy, thought to have been an 
Italian. At 10 P. M. the American Steamer 
Cubore, 7500 tons, was torpedoed. Her 50 sur- 
vivors were rescued from small boats by the 
Etourdi, a French gunboat. At 1 1 P. M. the 
Cubore sank. 

August 1 6 — At 1 A. M. the American Steamer 
West Bridge (sister ship of the Westward-Ho, 
torpedoed Aug. 8) was struck. The 99 survivors 

"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

of the West Bridge were rescued from life boats 
after twelve hours by the Destroyer Burrows. 
Included in the survivors were two American 
girls dressed in dungarees and wearing watch 
caps, which they said they put on to keep their 
skirts out of the way. Submarine evidently fol- 
lowing convoy, which was making about eight 
knots. Captain of West Bridge soon reported 
by wireless that he had little hope of saving his 
ship, but cargo of flour kept her floating. (She 
was towed to Brest two or three days later). 
Yacht Aphrodite reported having seen large sub- 
marine submerge, and Destroyer Drayton drop- 
ped depth charges on oil slick; result unknown. 
French vessels rushed to assistance of West 
Bridge. At 3 P. M. the Montanan sank, the 
Concord and other tugs steaming from Brest 
being too late to save her. 

August 1 7 — Left convoy and picked up 1 4 more 
vessels headed toward Bordeaux, escorted by 
French destroyers. At midnight a green rocket 
was fired and the crew summoned to general 
quarters, and Captain Davidson announced that 
somebody had been tampering with the Reid's 
torpedo tubes. U. S. S. Cudahy sunk off France; 
hit by two torpedoes fired by two submarines. 
Captain of Cudahy taken aboard U-boat and 
questioned; loss, 62 men. 

August 18 (Sunday) — Smooth and quiet except for 
radios saying "Idaho" was being shelled by sub- 
marine. French vessels sped to aid. On order 
of Lamson (flag), anchored at Royan, near Bor- 
deaux, at noon and had liberty for first and sec- 
ond sections. Left at 7 P. M. for Brest; 18 knots. 

August 19 — At 9 A. M. Reid and Lamson arrived 
at Brest. Burrows alongside Repair Ship Bridge- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

port. Franklin D. Roosevelt, accompanied by 
Rear Admiral Henry B. Wilson, addressed the 
sailors at the navy hut; called for best efforts to 
whip the Germans, and made quite an impression 
as a humorist. 

August 22 — Burrows, Conner, Roe, Winslow, Wads- 
worth and Sigourney out; Lamson in. Mess at- 
tendant who refused to press commanding officer's 
pants and seaman disrespectful to petty officer re- 
leased from five days confinement in paint locker 
on bread and water. 

August 25 (Sunday) — At 4:30 P. M. set sail with 
Smith toward States with two gilgadgets — War 
Python and Manchester Castle. Nine knots and 
rough during night. 

August 26 — Sea piped down and book entitled 
"Recollections of a Mosby Guerrilla" proved 
popular below. At 1:50 P. M. had steering en- 
gine trouble and steered a while aft by hand. 

August 2 7 — A British destroyer with captive balloon 
sighted. At 1 A. M. bade farewell to War Python 
and Manchester Castle, and at 4 :30 A. M. 
made contact with 1 8 gilgadgets of seven knot 
speed in a pinch, Middlesex included. Flusser 
flagship now; Smith, Preston, Yser (French de- 
stroyer) and six British destroyers. Convoy sepa- 
rated in afternoon, 1 1 gilgadgets going to Eng- 
land and six gilgadgets toward Brest, us with 
them. Smooth and pleasant. 

August 28 — At 9 A. M. man was reported over- 
board from merchant ship, and Reid's life pre- 
servers were made ready to heave. Went back 
and searched but could find nothing, so rejoined 
convoy at 18 knots. At 1 1:05 A. M. passed 
body of Frenchman floating to port side. At 4 
P. M. Ens. Wilson snapped some kodak pictures 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

on the forecastle. Made base at Brest at 
5 P. M. and went to coaling instead of liberty. 
Finished coaling at 12:20 A. M. ; 125 tons. 
August 30 — Underway at 1 P. M. convoying Von 
Steuben, America and Martha Washington (?) 
westward at 16-17 knots, accompanied by Roe 
and others. 

August 31 — At 9 P. M. left convoy. At 10:35 P. 
M. Roe flashed breakdown lights, steaming ahead. 
Gave left rudder and passed her safely. 

September 1 (Sunday) — Met eastbound convoy at 
7 :50 A. M. Peronne recovered by Allies. 

September 2 — At 1 1 :50 A. M. Brazilian merchant 
ship hoisted breakdown flag and fell behind. At 
5:30 P. M. sighted three submarine chasers es- 
corting 35 gilgadgets steering southwest. About 
9 P. M. Fanning flashed "man overboard" lights, 
but did not stop. Reid searched but found no- 

September 3 — Made base at 10:30 A. M. with 
twelve ships. One ship listing to port as Reid 
passed, heavy with doughboys, who cheered. 

September 6 — At 2 P. M. Mt. Vernon stood in, 
having been torpedoed; report said 36 lost lives. 
Slight list to starboard and ship was 1 2 feet low 
in water, due to leakage. At 3 P. M. Reid went 
alongside Tucker, which later stood out. At 6 
P. M. Sigourney (flag), Reid and four others left 
Brest with homeward-bound convoy at 1 5 knots. 

September 8 (Sunday) — Position four miles ahead 
of convoy. About noon left convoy because of 
poor coal, Sigourney and four continuing west- 
ward. Heard New York convoy was 1 7 hours 
late. Making five knots throughout night. 

September 9 — Dagfin, Norwegian steamer, reported 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

by SOS in distress; Corsair ordered to stand by 
her until arrival of tugs from Brest. Reid steam- 
ing to kill time. At 5 A. M. Sigourney granted 
Reid's request to return to port due to inferior 
coal. Warrington near us, low in oil, returning 
to port at 1 8 knots; Reid at 1 5. 

September 1 — Warrington in at 3 P. M. ; Reid at 
5 P. M. Two-hour liberty granted crew, but on 
account of influenza epidemic among French 
sailors, no public places were visited. Bodies of 
36 men reported taken out of firerooms of Mt. 
Vernon in dry dock. 

September 1 2 — Liberty cut off due to influenza. 
Finished coaling about 5 A. M. and at 6:30 A. M. 
sailed with Warrington, Little (flag), and Lamson 
at 1 5 knots toward England. Americans launch- 
ed hot attack against St. Mihiel salient. 

September 1 3 — At 7 A. M. picked up large east- 
bound convoy of gilgadgets. At 8 A. M. con- 
voy separated and American destroyers proceed- 
ed with five, including Osage, toward Brest at 9 
knots. Arrived at Brest in afternoon. 

September 1 4 — U. S. S. Buenaventura hit by two 
torpedoes off Bordeaux and sank in six minutes; 
French Destroyer Temeraire picked up two boat- 
loads of survivors and a third boat landed Cap- 
tain and 28 men at Corunna, Spain. 

(September 1 6 — Ericsson stood in. Flusser bent 
starboard boat davit coming alongside. Crew 
put on 72 tons of coal from lighter. Visiting of- 
ficer precipitated hot discussion in wardroom by 
reflecting on Admiral Wilson's sea legs. Captain 
Andre M. Procter, of the Panther, was praised as 
an officer without an opportunity in the big war. 
Captain Davidson "broken down with sea ser- 
vice" and gone to hospital. British Steamer Phil- 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

omel sunk near Lorient, France, and her 4 1 sur- 
vivors rescued and landed by Yacht Rambler. 

September 1 7 — At 8 A. M. crew drew small stores. 
Ensign Murdoch on "win-the-war" voyage to 
Paris. Lieutenant W. H. Osgood, executive of- 
ficer, commanding temporarily, impressed crew 
very favorably as a navigator by backing Reid 
outside breakwater and righting her in ten min- 
utes; best previous time, 30 minutes. Under- 
way at 4 P. M. with Lamson and one to meet in- 
coming convoy ; 1 8 knots. Executive officer 
slightly sea-sick and got underway to gravity 

September 1 8 — Uneventful. Night perfect, with 
moonlight and water in ripples. 

September 19 — At 3 A. M. bumped unexpectedly 
into convoy in rain storm, convoy being 1 hours 
ahead of time. 

September 20 — Making 13 knots. About 5 P. M. 
Taylor (94), new oil-burning destroyer, fired 
guns and depth charges at submarine. Reid 
went to general quarters; fired six depth charges, 
but saw nothing. Sea smooth. Sigourney flag- 

September 21 — Moonlight on 12-4 A. M. watch. 
At 9:30 A. M. arrived at Brest with convoy. 

September 23 — Crew up at 4 :25 A. M. coaling ship. 
U. S. Ss. Sylvan Arrow and McDougal stood in; 
Manchuria, Burrows, Sigourney and Cushing out. 
Captain Davidson returned aboard from hospital. 
Coal at base reported low. At 4 P. M. Reid, 
Lamson, Flusser and Monaghan left Brest convoy- 
ing Harrisburg and Plattsburg westward. Heavy 
seas and compartments receiving water. 

September 24 — Continued rough. 

September 25 — Calmer, and began to talk to east- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

bound convoy, which was 1 7 hours late. Crew 
aired bedding on deck. Nearly 1,000 miles west 
of base, setting record. Cushing, Burrows and 
Reid left convoy and formed scouting line, going 
slowly to kill time. Cushing asked if Reid had 
enough fuel; answered yes. Cushing's short 
course plan put us with convoy at 5 :45 P. M. 

September 27 — At 2 A. M. Finland and Henderson 
collided. Finland lit up like a church and de- 
stroyers flashed red lights. Convoy sped up for 
fear of torpedoing. Damage small and Finland 
and Henderson soon underway and rejoined con- 
voy after daylight. Porter, ahead, shot several 
"ash cans" at suspicious wake, and explosions 
were heard and felt through skin of ship. Crew 
piled out from below decks to participate in the 
excitement, but nothing was seen. At 1 1 P. M. 
Sigourney warned Benham to put out light. Hin- 
denhurg line broken in the west. 

September 28 — About 1 A. M. tied up at Brest. 

September 29 (Sunday) — Continued coaling ship 
from Blanchette, and finished about daylight. 
Bulgaria surrendered to Allies. 

October 1 — Commanding Officer raved when ap- 
proached at midnight by yeoman requesting in- 
formation as to progress of Will Mulhollands 
permanent appointment as chief water tender; 
commanding officer made a move as if to inflict 
condign punishment, but changed his mind, pull- 
ing coverlets over his head and going to sleep 
instead. St. Quentin recaptured by Allies. 

Oct 2 — At 6:30 A. M. underway with Lamson 
(flag) ; 15.5 knots; going west to meet incoming 
convoy. At 1:15 P. M. went to general quarters 
and investigated pronounced oil slick; patrolled 



Letting loose a depth charge at 20 knots, with a con- 
siderable percentage of the crew gathered back aft to 
witness the performance. Near Brest, 1918. 



In the swirling tide or the Gironde River near Bor- 
deaux on Dec. o, 1918, in a fog, a British steamer backed 
into the Lamson, with this result. The French steamer 
Patria is seen in background, at Brest. 

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"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

at 1 8 knots and secured on failure to develop 
anything interesting. 

Oct. 3 — Early picked up convoy. At 9:50 Aga- 
memnon and America with destroyer escort 
passed dead ahead. 

Oct. 4 — Steaming ahead of convoy. At 10:25 P. 
M. sighted lighthouse two points on starboard 
bow. King Ferdinand of Bulgaria abdicated the 

Oct. 5 — At 4:10 A. M. entered breakwater at 
Brest and tied up to Flusser; Lamson to Reid. 
Supply Ship Bridgeport, steaming into approaches 
to Brest Harbor, sighted a torpedo close to sur- 
face. Bridgeport put on full speed and gave 
rudder hard left. Torpedo skipped across stern 
and was plainly seen by watchers aft. The De- 
stroyer Fanning dropped six depth charges on an 
oil slick, then repeated elsewhere, but saw noth- 
ing. The submarine which attacked the Bridge- 
port is believed to have been sunk by a French 
patrol boat near Brest shortly afterward. The 
"frog eater" dropped depth charges after sighting 
a periscope. The vessel's listening device showed 
the submarine to be resting on the bottom; addi- 
tional charges were released and patches of oil 
came to the surface. 

Oct. 9 — At 6:30 A. M. underway with Lamson 
(flag), steaming southwest at 15 knots. Sea 
calm and weather pleasant. Lieut. Osgood 
started a new "reform": put yeomen to work 
doing paper work at sea, trying to pull battleship 
stuff by compiling Ship's Order Book. Cam- 
brai recaptured by British. Destroyer Shaw (U. 
S.) rammed and cut in two by Liner Aquitania 
in English Channel on way to Southampton. 
With destroyer afire and ammunition exploding, 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Commander Glassford, assisted by Ensign "Ted" 
Briggs, old Princeton crew captain, steered her 
unaided into port. 

Oct. 1 1 — Flusser joined. At 6 A. M. picked up 
convoy of 1 6 ships from States mostly bound for 
Bordeaux; Espiegle (French) senior ship, and 
Yacht May also present. Radio shack reported 
several submarines, but none in our course. Mak- 
ing ten knots. Commanding Officer explained 
to landsman on bridge uses of annunciator, pel- 
orus, ladder to searchlight platform, the wheel and 
such nautical things. Rough most of the day; 
wind 2-5. Left ships bound for Bordeaux and 
with Lamson proceeded at 1 1 knots toward 
Brest with Oil Tanker Maumee; seven submarine 
positions reported, with four submarines sighted, 
but none near us. At 10:30 P. M. ship on port 
side (Maumee) flashed breakdown lights. At 
10:55 P. M. Maumee turned off running lights 
and white lights and slowly dropped astern. 

Oct. 13 (Sunday) — At 3:45 A. M. Maumee again 
showed breakdown lights. 

Oct. 14 — At 7:05 A. M. sighted rocks and Pen 
March Light abeam. At 9 A. M. entered Brest 
and moored alongside H. M. S. Throstle. At 1 
A. M. paymaster paid crew. Liberty. 

Oct. 20 (Sunday) — Destroyer work slackening up 
a bit; Reid has been lying in port a week, the long- 
est in a year except when disabled. Underway at 
3 :30 P. M. with Tucker as flagship and Roe, 
Monaghan and one convoying Oil Tanker Mau- 
mee westward at 1 knots. Four radio decoders 
now working, which gives four hours on duty and 
12 off. At 9:40 P. M. Tucker fired two green 
rockets and convoy changed course. Belgian 
Coast cleared by Allies. 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

Oct. 21 — Smooth and uneventful. Only one sub- 
marine warning so far, off Lizard Head ; probably 
a U-boat making its way back to base. At 9 P. 
M. left Maumee. Reid's position astern of San- 

Oct. 22 — Continued pleasant and crew held gen- 
eral quarters and drills, after joining convoy at 
5 A. M. 

Oct. 23 — Weather sunshiny and crisp. Opened ports 
and played phonograph, and crew lolled about 
deck. One ship lagging behind and Reid with 
it; 10 knots. Passed Benham and Mt. Vernon, 
bound for Boston. Arrived at Brest 3:30 P. M. 
and made liberty. Harvard and Stewart stood 
in; Truxtun out. 

Oct. 29— At 9 A. M. Lieut. Comdr. W. S. Davidson 
was detached and left the ship for the States, and 
Lieut. Comdr. Comfort B. Piatt, formerly in com- 
mand of the Harvard, succeeded to command. 
At 9:30 A. M. Sigourney (flag), Reid and six 
other destroyers left Brest with convoy of 10 
ships headed west, at 1 2 knots. Reid zig-zagging 
ahead of convoy, five miles. Serbs reached the 
Danube, going strong. 

Oct. 30 — Rough weather; secured motor dory to 
prevent loss. Still five miles ahead of convoy; no 
submarines reported. Turks granted armistice. 

Oct. 31 — Continued rough. Several officers sea- 
sick and chased seamen off gravity tank. Smoke 
sighted on horizon. Now 750 miles west of 
Brest. At noon left convoy and maneuvered; 
caught it again. Made contact with eastbound 
convoy, escorted by Battleship New Hampshire 
and others, and turned back toward Brest. 
American drive on West Front turning German 
Army retreat into rout. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Nov. 1 — New Hampshire left convoy and turned 
toward America. In this convoy were Pocahontas 
(flag), Hospital Ship Comfort, a Brazilian ship, 
an Italian (Due D' Aosta) and four others, all 
with troops except Comfort, which had Red 
Cross nurses. Escorted by Little, Lamson, Mon- 
aghan, O'Brien and Reid. Passed a French ship 
and a British ship at noon which dipped to us, 
and we returned the salute as soon as a quarter- 
master could run back aft. Storm hit ships in 
afternoon, probably second worst in 1 5 months. 
Reid's engines went dead five minutes, due to 
water in engineroom, and crew was ordered to 
deck to stand by with life preservers; motor boat 
wrecked; wardroom furniture smashed, books 
and clothing scattered around deck. Keen com- 
petition among New Navy officers and men for 
places on gravity tank, with an occasional Old 
Navy sailor horning in. 

Nov. 2 — Storm continued and drove Comfort away 
from other ships, and Little was detailed by Brest 
to find her. Coal low; only 95 tons at 4 P. M. 
British captured Valenciennes. 

Nov. 3 (Sunday) — Weather more settled. Poca- 
hontas, Sigourney and Reid together. Little try- 
ing to reach Comfort by wireless, but without 
much luck. Comfort hove in sight at 1 P. M. and 
took position. At 2:30 P. M. tied up in Brest, 
and crew made liberty. Austria surrendered; 
mutiny at Kiel. 

Nov. 7 — Left Brest at 7 A. M. for Quiberon Bay. 
No submarine warnings. Arrived Quiberon Bay 
at noon. Picked up Steamer Euripides and 
steamed out to sea. Weather a bit rough. Bavar- 
ians proclaimed a republic. 

Nov. 8 — At 1 P. M. left Euripides and turned back 


'Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

toward Quiberon. Sighted French patrol boat on 
starboard bow. At night burning side lights 
(screened) for first time since leaving the Azores. 

N ov . 9 — At 2 :30 A. M. arrived at Quiberon. Passed 
convoy of four ships putting to sea. At 9 A. M. 
swung ship. At 1 P. M. underway for Lorient, up 
the coast. At 2:30 P. M. arrived at Lorient, 
where had liberty at 3:30 P. M., and returned to 
ship at 9 P. M. Gen. Foch received German 
peace envoys. Kaiser Wiihelm II fled to Amer- 
ongen Castle, Holland. Prince Max of Baden re- 
signed. People of Berlin staged mock revolt. 

Nov. 10 (Sunday) — At 6 A. M. Hubbard came 
alongside. Capt. Piatt (the "Little Corporal") 
tried to turn around in narrow channel; stern 
stuck in mud and steering cable broke. After 
hour and a half got off again (at 12:30 P. M.) 
and arrived at Quiberon at 2 P. M. Underway 
at 4 P. M. convoying U. S. S. Freedom (form- 
erly the Iroquois) and British Steamer Ulysses. 
Smooth sea; making twelve knots. British reached 

Nov. 1 1 — Continued smooth. Held fire and collis- 
ion drills. Received during morning a submarine 
warning from Lake Nereide (French?), with 
position given as 49-38 N., 01-39 W. Steering 
west true. At noon received wireless from Brest 
in French: "Hostilities cease 1 1 November be- 
ginning 1 1 A. M. Bretagne patrols continue with 
convoys in progress." This message was repeated 
to American Destroyers Reid, Truxtun, Taylor, 
Cummings, Bell and Drayton, all of which were 
proceeding on duty assigned. As it was 
read below deck the sailors cheered wildly, for it 
looked good to them. At 2 : 35 P. M. sighted two- 
masted schooner. At 3 P. M. sent farewell sig- 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

nals to Freedom and Ulysses and turned back 
toward Brest. 

Nov. 1 2 — At 1 :30 A. M. wire to Truxtun from Dev- 
onport Station said: "Armistice is signed. Hos- 
tilities to cease forthwith. Submarines on surface 
are not to be attacked unless their hostile inten- 
tions are obvious." Arrived Brest 8:30 A. M. 
Dozens of French patrol vessels standing into 
Brest. At noon a French salute of 42 guns was 
fired. French ships flying all flags gaily; Amer- 
ican ships flying flags as usual. Bands of French- 
men, mostly sailors, paraded at Brest throughout 
night, shouting and singing; they were much more 
intoxicated than ordinarily, and the women of the 
shops joined in the celebration. Some American 
sailors and soldiers paraded with the French. 

Nov. 22 — Winslow, Monaghan and Little stood in; 
Fairfax (93), Stringham and Jarvis in. With 
French pilot aboard Reid got under way at 1 1 
A. M. for Quiberon Bay; 15 knots. Anchored at 
6 : 1 5 P. M. at Quiberon. 

Nov. 23 — Under way at 7 A. M. piloting Hospital 
Ship Comfort out of harbor. Sea smoother. 
Left Comfort in an hour or two and hit up 20 
knots for Brest, Capt. Brandt declaring, "We 
don't want to hang around out here all day!" 
When off Pen March, 40 miles of Brest, 80 miles 
of Quiberon, Flag radio sent us back to Quiberon 
to pick up Stewart's motor boat. Reid's motor 
boat was made ready to go after Stewart's motor 
boat, but gasoline machinist could not make 
Reid's motor boat work, and had to bring Stew- 
art's motor boat to ship with Reid's whale boat. 
Standing by on five minutes notice. Rolled in for 
the night. 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

Nov. 24 (Sunday) — Under way at 7 A. M. for 
Brest at 1 6 knots. Increased speed to 23.6 knots, 
then trimmed to ten knots on entering channel to 
Brest. Moored alongside port side of Prometheus 
and Tucker at noon. Expended 120 tons of coal 
on this trip, and cost at French Government's 
minimum price of $20 per ton would be $2400, 
not to mention wear and tear on the ship. 

Nov. 25 — Little, McDougal and Preston stood out 
with two British transports. On returning at 9:30 
P. M. from liberty in Brest in tug and small boats, 
the American sailors were hooted and jeered by 
crowd of French (mostly small boys) on bridge 
above. Several shouted "Americain no good!" 
French boys threw nut hulls and pebbles and 
spat upon sailors, who kept quiet. 

Nov. 29 — At 4 P. M. departed for Bordeaux with 
Lamson and Preston on recreation trip. Reid 
flagship first time since May 25, 1918. Rough at 
start, but soon piped down. Picked up Mallory 
about midnight off lie d'Yeu, making 15 knots. 

Nov. 30 — At 3 A. M. a lone steamer rtearly ran into 
Reid. Blew him away with six toots on the whis- 
tle. At 1 :30 P. M. arrived at Bordeaux after 
trip up Gironde River. Crew impressed with size 
of docks and amount of material standing in rain. 

Dec. 3 — Crew roused out at 6:30 A. M. and at 10 
A. M. lifted anchor and sailed for Brest. Tide 
strong and whisked Reid against a coal-lighter, 
propeller guard punching hole in it, then by back- 
ing on the engines we managed to nestle snugly 
up against the Danish Steamer Alf-Kobenhaben, 
whose sea cook shouted in tones none too soft. 
Underway at 3 P. M. and at 5 P. M. stole up on 
Panther at Pauillac and moored alongside. Pres- 
ton and Lamson anchored nearby because of dan- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

ger of breaking Panther' s anchor chain, due to 
strong tides. 

Dec. 4 — At daylight, fog clearing a bit, shoved off 
down Gironde River with Preston and Lamson 
toward Royan. 

Dec. 5 — Anchored all day in fog. Supplies running 
low. Crew doing little but writing letters. Ring- 
ing bell on the forecastle every two minutes. 

Dec. 6 — At 3 A. M. fog lifted and three destroyers 
got under way, Lamson with smashed bow plow- 
ing up a lot of spray. Arrived Brest 4:30 P. M. 

Dec. 1 1 — Underway at 7:45 A. M. for Ponta Del- 
gada, Azores, with Lamson and Preston. Smith 
rammed by a tug and condition of her bow 
keeps her at Brest for repairs. 

Dec. 1 2 — Stormy and rough all day and New 
Navy Officers and gobs broke out the lemon 
drops. Coppersmith Denning smoking a vile pipe 
and telling tiresome yarns in forecastle. Slowed 
down to 1 6 knots. 

Dec. 1 3 — Not so rough. Off our course at night. 
At midnight changed course to southward. 

Dec. 1 4 — Lost islands early in morning, then went 
south and sighted St. Michael's at 1 A. M. 
Making 1 2 knots now so as not to frighten the 
natives. Passed cities of Lagoa and Faial de 
Terra at foot of mountain. Tied up with Lamson 
and Preston at 2:30 P. M. 

Dec. 15 (Sunday) — Christabel stood out; Truxtun 
shoved off from Reid to collier. At 8 A. M. 
diver went down to Truxtun keel to make exam- 
ination. Reid moored between Preston and 
Stewart; Lamson next to Preston. Diario dos 
Azores, a daily newspaper, announced on bulletin 
board assassination of Dr. Sidonio Paes, presi- 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

dent of Portugal, in attempt to restore monarchy. 
Met our old college chums Rolando Viveiros, 
Augusto S. and Luiz Moreira, Evaristo Ferreira 
Travassos, Henrique Machado Avila and Wad- 
dington Resende. Jacome Torrao escorted a 
party of Reid men to the Azorean Musical Club's 
club rooms, and put on a stringed instrument 
concert that was a wonder. Vedette stood in. 

Dec. 1 6 — Day broke clear and sunshiny. All flags 
ashore and aship half-masted for the assassinated 
President of Portugal. Machinist George Zie- 
mann arranged with native chauffeur to provide 
four automobiles Tuesday, Dec. 1 7, for trip of 20 
gobs to baths and hotwells of Furnas, at rate of 
$5.20 apiece on account of prohibitive price of 
gasoline. Senhors Avila, Manuel Antonio de Vaz- 
ioncellos and Antonio Monez Feijo used their 
good offices to beat down the price. 

Dec. 1 7 — Chauffeur Jacome Luiz Tessorara took 
station at Catholic Church with four automobiles, 
awaiting arrival of Reid party, but the trip to 
Furnas was disapproved by Capt. Chandler, who 
gave no reason for his high-handed action. Mem- 
bers of party kept out of sight of automobile driv- 
ers all day long. Gentle breeze sprang up and 
night proved wonderful for sleeping purposes. 

Dec. 18 — Sky overcast. Warm; thermometer about 
60 degrees. Two mine layers stood in. Crew 
and natives putting coal on deck for long trip to 
Grassy Bay, Bermuda; 260 tons. Services held 
ashore for the late President of Portugal. Crew 
begged "comical steward" to buy some cheap 
fruit, but his lordship said one of the officers said 
we couldn't afford it, so the crew went and bought 
its own fruit. Beans and "red lead" for break- 
fast. Had only one feed of fruit in week, with 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

fruit plentiful and cheap. Crew began filling up 
lockers with pineapples and oranges for long trip 
to Bermuda. Shawmut and Aroostok stood in. 
Aroostok and Shawmut stood out. 

Dec. 19 — Beans and "red lead" for breakfast. Pres- 
ton flew homeward bounder and stood out; same 
with Stewart; same with Lamson. Jarvis, Cum- 
mings, McDougal, Burrows and Isabel stood in. 
Continued coaling. At 1 P. M. Repair Ship 
Dixie stood in and Coppersmith Denning went up 
in crow's nest trying to sight old shipmates. 
Finished coaling at 4:43 P. M., having taken total 
of 293 tons aboard, part of it on deck. At 5 P. 
M. flew homeward bounder and followed Pres- 
ton and Lamson and Flusser toward Bermuda. 
Steaming astern of Flusser, SOP, and starboard 
beam of Whipple. Reid to stand by Whipple if 
her coal gave out; Flusser by Worden; Lamson 
and Preston by Stewart and Truxtun. Steaming 
at 12-15 knots, separately by groups at times. 

Dec. 20 — Smooth sailing. Using coal supply from 
deck. Decided to steer southerly course to escape 
storms and to cover 2400 miles in nine days. 
Moonlight, cool and pleasant. 

Dec. 2 1 — Whipple had condenser trouble and 
Reid slowed down to eight knots to stand by her. 
At 9 P. M. made out steamer heading in south- 
westerly direction. At 9:35 P. M. made speed 1 6 
knots to avoid collision with steamer. At 9:37 
crossed bow of steamer, distant 300 yards, then 
resumed standard speed. 

Dec. 22 (Sunday) — Began getting rough; wind 

Dec. 23 — Storm continued. Compartments flooded 
and in hapless condition; yeoman office littered 
with forms and papers, but happily dry. At 1 1 


"Barnacles" from the Log (concluded) 

A. M., while waves were very high, Whipple 
signalled, "Man overboard." (It was Chief 
Quartermaster Lee, swept off by a wave) . Reid 
circled and presently sighted two buoys, one 
flaming, dropped by Whipple, but saw nobody 
with them. After an hour Capt. Chandler sign- 
alled Whipple, "Do you see anything? If not, 
suggest we go ahead." No reply to this sugges- 
tion, and search continued another hour, when 
search was abandoned. Tip of Reid's mainmast 
snapped off and was secured; aerial down tem- 
porarily, but rigged it out again. Intercepted 
wireless message from Wenonah saying she had 
just lost overboard Lieut, (jg) Reuben Orey, U. 
S. N. R. F., of Somerville, Mass. Report went to 
Washington via Cruiser Wheeling at Grassy Bay, 

Dec. 24 — Smoother and pleasanter, but still dis- 
agreeable. Oranges and pineapples from Azores 
making life worth living for crew. Worden, 
escorted by Flusser, broke down, lacking water. 

Dec. 25 (Christmas Day) — Calmer. Bunch playing 
poker in forward compartment. Sun came out 
and crew celebrated Christmas by fishing for sea- 
weed and reading around chart-house. Had 
mackerel with tomato sauce for dinner; spuds 
with jackets on, apricots, white bread, butter, 
beans and pumpkin pie which was no good. 

Dec. 26 — Choppy sea. Flusser ordered Reid to 
give Whipple 1 5 tons of coal. Capt. Chandler 
wired back that Reid had sacks for only four tons, 
and suggested the advisability of taking the 
Whipple in tow. Lamson, Preston, Stewart and 
Truxtun nearby but out of sight. Flusser waiting 
with Luckenback to take Worden in tow. Reid 
took Whipple in tow about noon. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Dec. 27 — Flusser wired Reid to take on enough 
coal at Bermuda to make New York at 20 knots, 
plus 50 tons reserve, so as to arrive Dec. 31 if 
possible, in time for big fleet review Jan. 1 , 1919. 

Dec. 28 — Raining hard 12-4 A. M. ; then drizzling. 
All hands up at 6 A. M. to haul in towing line 
when Whipple was released from tow. Arrived 
Grassy Bay at noon. Preston went on beach in 
trying to cut through narrow channel. Tug 
rushed to pull her off. 

Dec. 29 (Sunday) — Crew continued coaling at 
midnight. Showers. Finished coaling at 9 A. 
M., having taken aboard 1 78 tons, as ordered by 
Capt. Chandler, chief petties having advised only 
150. Old Dr. Felts gave crew change-of-climate 
pills. Overcast and damp as Flusser, Lamson 
and Reid departed. Preston still stuck on mud 
bank. Going to Charleston instead of New 

Dec. 30 — Rough all day. Making 15-20 knots. At 
9:50 P. M. Flusser dropped out of column and fell 
behind, making 1 5 knots to save coal. 

Dec. 31 — At 4 A. M. sea piped down, and balance 
of day was smooth. At noon out of our course 
and followed coast to south. At 1 P. M. sighted 
Cape Romain Light and Wreck of the Hector. 
Tied up in Navy Yard near U. S. S. Savannah at 
6 P. M. Thirty-six hour liberty granted sections 
rating liberty. Lieuts. Brown and Murdoch 
filed applications for discharge, and commanding 
officer passed the buck to headquarters at Wash- 
ington. Seventy per cent of the crew also pre- 
pared to commence to take the necessary steps 
to gain their freedom by signing up with the 
"Good Ship Outside." 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

(From the Journal of a Landsman, with special refer- 
ence to some features of the Azores-Queenstown storm of 
Oct. 9-13, 1917, and the Portuguese storm of Dec. 15-17, 

W mmm 1 E HAVE the speed, the cans, the gunners — the 
"ambish and the ammunish," as Rosy, our Italian 
gunner, put it — if only they don't see us first and 
plug us from dead on broadside! I was wrapped in 
this sort of thought when I heard a lookout call to the bridge, 
where our officers were busy peeking at the horizon through 
glasses long and short: 

"Sail, ho!" 

"Where away?" 

"Three points on starboard bow, sir. Looks like a peri- 

A stiff breeze was blowing out of the southwest, cooler 
now than it had been since we set out, and our heavy coats 
felt unusually comfortable as we scampered up the ladder 
cf the seamen's compartment to the deck. The sea was 
a trifle more turbulent, bathing our forecastle now and then 
in a beautiful white spray which skipped across from side 
to side and was picked up and whisked against the chart 
house by the wind. On our port beam was a purple glow 
which lent a peculiar radiance to that section of an other- 
wise uninteresting horizon, while off in the direction indi- 
cated by the lookout, between two and three miles, a heavy 
fog was gathering fast. 

"I can't see anything," declared "Port-hole Johnny," our 
alert chief quartermaster, straining his minky black eyes 
through a pair of binoculars. 

"Nor I," returned our watch officer, who had hopped 
across the bridge from the port side. 

"Must be another case of periscopitis," suggested our en- 
gineer officer as he dropped his glasses to his side. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Our captain alone seemed to be hopeful of making out 
something, for he held his glasses to his eyes and swept 
them back and forth through a 45-degree arc. 

"Hold on," he said. "Seems like I see a small object 
out there in the fog. Train your glasses again." 

All obeyed the order promptly and eagerly. 

'I see it now," cried several in chorus, and the skipper 
shouted to our salty little helmsman to cut her nose two and 
a half points to starboard, and then he signalled the engine 
room to give us 25 knots. The steering engine hissed and 
rattled as the helmsman put her over, the ship's sides creak- 
ed ominously, and her vitals groaned as our veteran chief 
machinist's mate shot the extra steam into the cylinder 
heads and cut in the blowers on the boilers to make steam 
all the faster. Our hardworking heaves grabbed their shov- 
els and began feeding in great masses of coal, heavy black 
smoke rolled out of the four smoke stacks and our pro- 
pellers whipped the water into angry wavelets that bubbled 
and boiled like a giant's wash pot, then gradually settled in 
our wake, a silken cord of gray. Our razor-edge bow cut 
a fine slit through the sea, sending an occasional wave top 
sweeping across the forecastle, and it was thrilling in the 
extreme to feel the ship's tremendous power under our feet 
and in the very air as we manipulated the devices which had 
held it subdued. We were traveling twice as fast as a hay- 
burning locomotive on its way to a North Georgia moun- 
tain resort, and I could not help but wonder what would 
happen if by any chance we should ram a whale. Cer- 
tainly we would get oil on the water, and perhaps give up 
some wreckage, too. 

Now we heard the general quarters bell clanging, and 
each Jack Tar scrambled to his regular post. The guns 
were all manned and the ammunition rushed up from the 
boxes. Our gunner's mates climbed to the tops of the twin 
torpedo tubes and perched on their high seats like jockeys 
ready for a race of geldings. 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

"Range, 2,000 yards!" shouted our executive officer at a 
guess, forgetting all about the range finder. "Train on 
target half a point on starboard bow." The order was re- 
peated through the tubes to all the guns which could be 
brought to bear, and the men got on their tip-toes quick. 

"Tell Ducky to stand by the mines!" ordered our execu- 
tive officer, snatching a pair of glasses from a quartermaster 
and sighting the object again. Ducky was the ranking 
member in our firm of chief gunner's mates. We called 
him Ducky because of his legs, and he was one of the best 
men in the game, and had also done some diving in his 
younger days. Ducky always stayed within earshot of our 
executive officer, so he made off as fast as his legs would 
carry him. 

"Train the starboard machine gun on the object and be- 
gin firing," was the next order. Our machine gunner ram- 
med in a clip of cartridges and peeked through the sight. 
He could see a dark, slender object sticking three or four 
feet above the surface, and he became so excited that he 
forgot to cock the gun. The bunch on the bridge began 
to squirm as the machine gun man pulled hard on the trig- 
ger, but failed to get results. The target appeared to be 
leaping at us now. 

"Fire!" yelled our executive officer, hoping to smash a 
periscope at the first shot. 

"The damn thing won't work!" declared the gunner, fum- 
bling about the breech lock. 

A seaman stepped up and announced that she had jam- 
med. The bridge bunch tore their hair at this juncture. 
You couldn't blame them. The suspense was awful. We 
either wanted to shoot at the thing or get shot quick. 
Closer and closer we sped, and must dash by in a minute or 
two and maybe get a torpedo smack in the ribs. 

"Fire the forecastle gun!" interposed our captain. 

"Bang!" went the forecastle rifle with a roar that shook us 
up and made us all feel good. The shell hit the water 400 
yards beyond the target and went skipping out of sight. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

"Give her another! We are not out here to save powder!" 

"Bang!" and the second shot hit fifteen feet to the left 
and sent a slender column of water into the air. 

"Cease firing!" ordered our executive officer. "It's noth- 
ing but a spar." 

Several pairs of glasses were raised, and it was now seen 
that the object was floating as if it were water-logged at 
the lower end, or carried a weight of some kind. "Keep 
away," warned the captain to our helmsman. "The durn 
thing might have a mine on it." The helmsman cut her 
sharp to port and we could see the other destroyer racing 
toward us at top speed. Our lame duck of a convoy with 
the wooden gun seemed to be marking time. Then she cut 
zig-zag capers. 

As our stern passed the spar we felt a sudden shock of 
great force. The bow of the vessel dipped low and the fan- 
tail went up in the air correspondingly. We held on to the 
nearest objects and peeked over the sides, looking aft, and 
could plainly see the propellers spinning like gyroscopes. 
Quite as quickly we settled down again and a mountainous 
deluge of water fell astern of us. 

"What was that?" asked our executive officer as he leaped 
across the bridge, upsetting the helmsman. 

"It was a can or I'm no sailor," declared a chief petty 

Ducky came waddling forward at this point to explain 
that one of our mines had slipped overboard accidentally 
and had exploded too soon; said he hoped there would be 
no board of inquiry; nobody was hurt or to blame. Our 
officers held a short consultation and decided that a full re- 
port of the affair was the least that could be done, and then 
we got into our course again, and I walked across the deck 
to ask a seaman what our engineer officer meant by a case 
of periscopitis. 

"Haven't you heard of the new disease?" he asked, 
amazed at my ignorance. "That's what sailors have when 
they think they see submarines. Everything looks like peri- 


This flag was broken out especially for our homeward 
journey. The flags we usually carried were about 2x3% 
feet, and several lasted through the war. 


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Here is one of the latter, and a luscious one of 45 de- 
grees, too; taken Dec '2-i, 1918, between the Azores and 
Bermuda in the height of a blow. 


The picture shows the American Flag; half-masted at 
the Consulate for Dr. Paes. William Bar del, the Ameri- 
can Consul, notified the ships and all colors were drooped. 


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Standing by the Wing Locker 

scopes. One fellow has got it bad. You had better keep 
away from him." 

"Is it contagious?" I asked with a trace of apprehension. 

"Not always; depends on the condition of your consti- 
tution," he replied. 

I pinched myself to see how my opsonic index was get- 
ting along. It seemed to be there all right, but I was not 
sure but what I would have the periscopitis before night. 
Sort of wished I could hitch onto a cloud, but felt it would 
be impossible with so many grim realities around me. 

Presently a seaman they called "The Bird" clambered up 
the ladder to the chart house and took his post beside us. 

"Where the hell you been, 'Bird?' " the other sailor in- 

"Standin* by the wing locker — where you reckin?" he 

"The Bird" used to be a baggageman on a well-known 
and popular railroad running out of Chicago and had trav- 
eled extensively as a land lubber. He was a small man of 
27, with heavy wrinkles in his face, due to playing solitaire 
and checkers late of nights; his eyes were black and beady 
and close above them his dark hair grew out profusely, giv- 
ing him a fierce appearance that did not exactly comport 
with his reputation for humor of the finest and most spon- 
taneous kind. When he started a story or song he was in 
the habit of squinting sidewise at you and bending his body 
a trifle at the waist — like a modern Captain Kidd on the 
verge of shooting up a saloon on liberty, or skinning a frog 

"I don't get you," returned the seaman, smiling broadly. 

"You been a seaman six months and don't know what the 
wing locker is?" inquired "The Bird." "Well, I'll tell you, 
Bubber. The wing locker is the place where you get your 
wings when a torpedo hits you. You put on the wings and 
fly away to the nearest land. Your uncle is captain of the 
wing locker; salute your captain!" 

"Fine, but how do you put them on — with wax, like the 

70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

wretched Daedalus, or simply with glue?" asked the other, 
who was a college man. 

"That's the big secret. My own invention. Costs only 
ten dollars to learn, and is well worth the price. First time 
we get abandon ship drill you stand by the wing locker with 
me and help me keep the bunch in line." 

"The Bird" sprang away to report a cork floating on the 
port bow. He volunteered the information that it looked 
like a beer bottle cork, from which it might be inferred that 
Germans had passed in the neighborhood. The other look- 
out went into the chart house to borrow a piece of bees- 
wax to strengthen a string, and I was left to my own re- 
flections. My back was beginning to hurt from leaning 
against a protruding portion of the flag box, and I wondered 
if it wouldn't be possible to bring enough pressure on my 
congressman to cause him to introduce a bill setting aside 
a sum of money to provide cushions for certain places where 
lookouts must lean or hang in order to detect submarines. 
It also seemed reasonable that seats of medium comfort 
should be provided, because it is no easy matter to stand 
four solid hours on aching feet, and besides, a man can see 
as far in a sitting posture as in an upright position. How- 
ever, Chips, our chief carpenter's mate, said it was easier 
to sleep sitting down, and I guess there's a good deal in that. 
Maybe that explains why the decks of destroyers are the only 
flat surfaces thereon. 

As I gazed toward the far-off horizon I thought of an- 
other thing. Why shouldn't sailors have decently deep 
pockets to keep their effects in? Maybe you say that after 
a reasonable time a sailor has no effects, but that is not lit- 
erally true. I know a lot of sailors that would like to carry 
a comb, a small looking glass and a pencil except that their 
three dress blues pockets measure only an inch square each. 
Why, lots of sailors have more gold and currency than they 
can carry in two pockets, and of course it is fair to allow 
the third — over the heart in the blouse — for a handkerchief. 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

Personally, I carry my money, a nub of a pencil and a wad 
of note paper in one pocket of my trousers, a ditty box key, 
a small piece of soap and some twine in the second, and 
cram my handkerchief into the third. Occasionally I stick 
post cards and letters in my flat cap — peanuts, cheese and 
bananas in my blouse, but that is considered very bad form, 
especially when gold-stripers are around. Sailors are sub- 
jected to another grim obsession in respect to clothes, — 
trousers legs that contain several yards too much cloth in 
the cuffs and not enough in the waste (we mean waist). 
This extravagance was practiced when sheep and the entire 
world were crying for. more wool, just to perpetuate an ab- 
surd old custom. One excuse commonly offered for loop- 
legged trousers is that the men can roll up the pants legs 
easily when making landing parties. Don't swallow that, 
people of intelligence! In the first place, landing parties 
for sailors are very infrequent; ask the men themselves. 
In the second place, no captain worthy of the name would 
send his men on a landing party dressed in liberty blues; if 
a scrap was due they would go in dungarees or whites, chop- 
ping their pants legs off at the knees if necessary. Should 
blues by any chance be used, the water would soak through 
them as through a sponge, and the weight of the water and 
the speed of the gob would pull the pants legs down around 
the shins. Then once on land the great pants legs would 
flap about so as to tangle him up and throw him often, with 
possibly serious injuries, so that all in all he would be about 
as fit to fight as a beturbaned, rheumatic old plantation 

There is another thing without rhyme — the flat cap. 
(The Blue Jackets' Manual calls the flat hat a cap and the 
white cap a hat; everything seems backward in this con- 
founded outfit, so we let it go at that!) The cap grommet 
makes the cap set on the head like a pie plate, and spreads 
it out like a sail so that every little gust of wind blows it off, 
and, since it is round, it goes skipping down the avenue 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

with the speed of a hoop. The gob goes chasing after it, 
and of course if officers or civilians are nearby in sensible 
attire that stays put, that is amusing. Finally we have the 
thirteen buttons in the front of the pants — ye gods! No. 
! is Massachusetts and the other twelve doubtless stand for 
the remaining twelve original colonies, for which let us be 
proud of it and thankful there are not forty-eight! Other- 
wise we might be inclined to rip the garment slightly up the 
back. The rig serves at least one purpose — to make a sailor 
look like something foreign to land or sea. 

Rear-Admiral Ralph Earle, chief of the Bureau of Ord- 
nance and a humorist beyond compare, started an interest- 
ing win-the-war measure under date of March 25, 1918, 
consisting of an attempt to change the old tight-fitting blouse 
of officers by vote to a reefer similar to that worn by British 
officers and American chief petties. In a memorandum to 
the service, Admiral Earle admitted that it might be hard to 
understand how a campaign could appropriately be launched 
through the Ordnance Department, yet he had all the dope 
and would present it anyhow for the sake of efficiency. Un- 
doubtedly he drew his inspiration from the following verse 
written by C. McK. Lynch, Ensign, U. S. N. : 


I've heard it swore in days of yore 
Men went to war "too tight to fight" 
With all their might. 

Of Gin and Beer we now steer clear, 
But to the blouse as to a spouse 
Cling year by year, — 
"Too tight to fight." 

Last week I crossed the deep 

Too tight to eat or sleep; 

When two points to right 

I spied and tried to cry "A periscope!" 

Alas! my blouse, 1 choke; 

We did not float! 

. . . To win the war we must have the coat! 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

"As to the present blouse being distinctive," contin- 
ued Admiral Earle's unfeeling assault on the old order, 
"such an assertion is ridiculous. During the past sum- 
mer, Commander Castle spent a day in the Vickers 
Company Yards at Barrow in Furness, England. Twice 
during that one day were he and companion officers 
mistaken for Italian officers and once for Russian offi- 
cers. Being rather proud of our own service, they did 
not appreciate these mistakes. Again, the officer in 
charge of an inland ordnance plant has been taken for 
a hotel bell boy and never for a naval officer. How 
many of us have had wraps offered us and received 
angry expressions when we did not take them or open 
the automobile door and so on in public places? No 
one has ever thus mistaken an English naval officer. 
The Fall River Line and other inland water lines copy 
our blouse and are more gorgeous than the Admiral 
himself. The deep sea merchantmen seldom wear a 
blouse. In a conversation of two army officers recently 
overheard in the lobby of a theatre, the door-keeper of 
which wore a high, tight-fitting collar adorned with 
much gold braid, it was remarked that they had been 
much confused of late in their efforts to distinguish bell 
boys and porters from naval officers, but in this case 
felt more inclined to salute the door-keeper for one 
than a person in any uniform they had seen." 
Rear Admiral Henry B. Wilson was quoted as declaring 
the blouse "is an abomination and I cannot understand how 
any older individual who is obliged to wear it can stand by 
it," and Capt. W. W. Phelps was quoted as declaring "Any- 
thing to supplant that abomination called the service blouse, 
or service jacket, or what not." 

Such changes will be entirely for the good of the service. 
And while the changes are being made it might be well to 
make more distinction between chiefs and galley aristocrats, 
or, to attain the ideal, to force these aristocrats by regu- 
lation to shoulder all the gold lace, braid, epaulets, chevrons 
and everything remotely akin to them whose strongest ap- 
peal is to vanity, mimicry, savagery and prehensility. 

These important matters I was pondering deeply when 4 
o'clock came and we were relieved from watch. As we left 
our posts a rainstorm burst upon us. Down shot the mer- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

cury to 55? a drop of fifteen degrees almost immediately. 
Our boatswain's mate of the watch dived into the hold and 
dragged forth the oilskins, and handed a suit to each look- 
out. The cold was so penetrating that he went down again 
and brought out the sheepskin coats for the first time. A 
high wind blew out of the southwest, driving the rain into 
the necks of the lookouts with a sharp pain. The sea be- 
came choppy, then our slender craft rolled like a gar-fish 
from side to side, varying with pitches and lurches as we 
changed course slightly or the sea misbehaved from a dif- 
ferent direction. After a while the rain held up, but the 
wind whipped our loose canvas-ends into shreds. I was 
quite taken aback to see our comical steward weeping softly 
against the ice-box as he held on with both hands. Said a 
case of eggs had gone to the deck from the refrigerator top, 
and the responsibility would be traced back to him. 

"But why grieve over demolished eggs?" I inquired reas- 
suringly. "Nobody is responsible for such things around 

"They are six cents apiece, and 30 dozen to the case!" 
he wailed. 

A wave lifted us suddenly and I went down on my right 
hip, sustaining, as they say in Brooklyn, severe contusions 
and abrasions, as well as a shaking-up that transposed my 
entire visceral mass. Our chief pharmacist's mate rushed 
up with a tourniquet, some iodoform gauze and sticking 
plaster, and asked which I needed worst. I told him I guess- 
ed the sticking plaster would do, and I would put it on as 
soon as the ship got still. He said to come around in the 
morning to the apothecary shop and he would give me some 
witch hazel for soreness, — that he was well fitted out to care 
for the wounded. I thanked him and made my way below 
to the seamen's compartment and hitched to a stanchion for 
chow. I call attention to the stanchions because our tureens 
were tied to them, containing food and silverware, while 
the rest of the food was in aluminum platters which the mess 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

cooks surrounded as best they could with their feet and 
knees. Occasionally a platter would get away from our 
inexperienced mess cook of the Reserve Force and he would 
dive across the compartment to nab it, only to lose other 
vessels he had been safeguarding. The hungry sailors would 
lend a hand and assemble the chow again, whereupon each 
man would help himself and eat under whatever endurable 
circumstances he could find. 

Gentle reader, imagine yourself perched on a camp stool 
with face to port and back to starboard — at the seamen's 
dining table — trying to steer a bowl of soup safely into 
your alimentary canal. The ship rolls 45 degrees, and your 
stool and soup bowl begin to slide at the same time. You 
hold the edge of the table with your left hand, clasp your 
spoon down hard into the bottom of the bowl to secure it, 
then cautiously push yourself to your feet, for the stool 
threatens to carry you across the compartment in a jiffy. 
The angle of the bowl now being constant with regard to the 
relation it bears to the table, the angle described by the 
ship's lurch spills half your soup. You quickly release your 
grip on the table edge and take the bowl in both hands to 
steady it. This leaves the soup suspended perfectly be- 
tween zenith and nadir, fixed in its relation to the bowl, and 
altogether incomparable if you do not weaken. Stated an- 
other way, the soup will not spill, although it may be get- 
ting cold. Yet you must devise some way to eat. Your 
spoon and slice of light bread have been sliding all over the 
table, kept from hitting the wet deck only by a wooden 
flange. Before you can plan your campaign, your feet be- 
gin to slip and ere you can blink an eye you have slid four 
yards across to the starboard dining table, getting your feet 
hopelessly tangled up in the legs of a prostrate stool, bump- 
ing without demanding gangway into a shipmate who turns 
loose his soup so it fits perfectly down your neck. No apol- 
ogies are needed; you are too glad that your soup is still in- 
tact and you are still existing, but ere you have recovered 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

from the confusion the ship rolls from 45 positive to the 
same negative and you rejoin your old friends the spoon and 
the bread where you left them a moment ago. You set the 
bowl down like it was a baby, cling to the table with your 
left hand and go after your spoon with your mighty right, 
hoping a lapse will come so you can swallow a spoonful and 
be happy. But the lapse does not come and the bowl goes 
caroming to the deck. All the while the mess cook has been 
casting angry, furtive glances at you, and he now calls you 
harsh names; and everybody who is not your next friend 
scoffs and asks how you ever pried your way into this man's 
organization anyhow. 

I saw a queer happening which our lawyer and notary 
public will swear to. A tureen of canned salmon skidded 
off a nearby locker and hit under the starboard table. The 
mess cook plunged after it, but missed by a hair. The ves- 
sel bounced plumb into the lap of our Irish oiler, who 
shouted gleefully as he seized it with both hands, "I've got 
the bloody thing!" I was reminded of a fat football center 
receiving the ball on the kickoff in the region of his center 
of gravity, and not knowing what to do with it. The ship's 
swing-back upset our hero and the salmon slipped away 
from him, landing on the locker of a gunner's mate and 
spoiling a brand new suit of liberty blues. I had the mis- 
fortune to let a ration of stew get away from me to the 
deck. There was no use staying below to hear the mess 
cook rave, so I seized a cold potato between my teeth and 
followed it madly all the way to the chart house, where I 
feasted in peace. I was thankful to be alive, — thankful that 
I had a slippery deck to skate on, a speaking tube to cling 
to, and an oil-sVin coat that fit so snugly about my neck 
that not more than a quart of briny water seeped in every 
time our good ship did a smart courtsey to the angry waves. 
Only a thi'-d arm could have made me happier. Everv sailor 
needs one in his business. In the matter of prehensile 
things evolution has not even started to begin to provide. 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

The deck continued to be a sort of good-natured jog- 
gling-board that regularly teased you, smashed you and ex- 
terminated you. In another hour I had contracted "deco- 
rations" on my knees that stuck out like hen eggs, and sev- 
eral slivers of perfectly good epidermis had been peeled off 
my shins; but pains of various kinds convinced me that my 
heart, lungs, and diaphragm were still working, though in 
different places than they had occupied before. I had 
grown so feeble from underfeeding and excitement that 
anybody could have knocked me flat with a dried herring 
or an ostrich feather. Perhaps it would be an advantage 
to go below and try to sleep; but no, it was nearly as un- 
steady down there and I did not relish the stifling closeness 
of it. Furthermore, I didn't care to be calumniated by a 
mess cook while not able to defend myself. After a while 
he would surely forget, or at least listen to reason. 

Along came a wave that catapulted me from one side 
of the ship to the other, and my head hit our boatswain's 
mate of the watch in the middle and sent him reeling. He 
seized me by the neck and looked around for a marlin-spike, 
but failing to find one, relented and demanded to know 
what I was doing near the chart house when not on duty. 
I stammered that I was watching the waves in order to re- 
port any submarines that might be hovering near. He 
shoved me into a corner and tied me about the waist to a 
bridge upright, saying I was a dangerous person to be loose 
on deck, and after two hours I might go below. I thanked 
him, and presently a gunner's mate staggered by, shifting 
from forecastle gun to quarter deck to test his sights. A 
steam exhaust pipe hissed steam into my ear, and, oh! those 
odors from the galley! 

I gazed at my shipmate appealingly. 

"What are you hitched up for?" the gunner shouted. 

"Got the crew's pay slips in my pocket/' I replied. 

"Good boy! Want any more rope?" 



70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

He disappeared and I was free to gaze upon the most won- 
derful white-caps that I had ever seen. Perhaps they were 
more than white-caps; they were the tops of waves 50 feet 
high. They flirted with us, laughed at us, danced about 
us and occasionally hurled themselves upon us. Hobgoblins 
and mermaids seemed to be tripping and splashing in a cav- 
ernous fairy kingdom, brandishing torches of fox-fire as they 
came and went, for it was night, and dark. Streaking 
through this mass of coral castles and gay sea sprites we 
appeared to be a huge dragon breathing hot blasts of flame 
from our nostrils and loosing reserve stocks of fire from our 
sides and tail. The fancy sorties of the waters gave the 
effect of myriads of subdued electric lights. It was the 
phosphorus in the sea. Huge fish sped toward us to see 
what brand of monster we could be, then swished away at 
right angles or turned tail about as they realized we traveled 
without fins. Little fountain spouts grew up out of the 
wave tops and broke into fine rainbow spray. Overhead a 
hazy white canopy encompassed it all, with now and then 
a star shining dimly. Professor Paine* s peerless fireworks 
were nothing by comparison. My second self told my mor- 
tal self that I was lucky to gaze upon a scene like this, that 
submarines did not matter, and that I should take a brace 
if I wished to survive. My mortal self replied to my second 
self that my fate was a matter of indifference so long as I 
could have an end of the agony. 

It was now time to go below and I unhitched and put 
the rope coil under my belt for future use. A sudden en- 
counter with a wave sent me to my hands and knees. Beth- 
lehem steel is hard, so I crawled the distance to the ladder 
and fell to the quarter-deck, then fell down the other ladder 
to the head of my bunk. Only one light was burning, and 
it was all wrapped up in black cotton socks so the subs 
couldn't see us far. I groped my way to my bunk and re- 
moved my shoes, this being an old custom with sailors, to 
rest the feet. Then I stretched out and was ready for a 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

few hours of slumber. However, the waves continued to 
pound us and make the night hideous. The machinery 
creaked and groaned and a leaky steam pipe kept whistling 
like a peanut parcher. I thought I could hear one or two 
men snoring, but I could not go to sleep. To stay in my 
bunk it was necessary to run my arms beneath an elastic 
strap that goes over the middle of my mattress and under 
the metal cot. In this position I remained doggedly silent 
until midnight, when our watch was called again. I was 
so sleepy that I remembered little of what happened dur- 
ing the next four hours, except that at the end of it I no- 
ticed a radio man swinging around No. 1 smokestack in 
an effort to snag our flying wireless apparatus and put it 
to rights again. After two or three hours more of misery 
on the bunk, breakfast time came, with beans and loaf bread 
as the menu, and I felt sure I would be lucky to stomach a 
single bean. While I was not exactly sea-sick, I was very 
much disturbed on the interior. Beans didn't look a bit 
good to me. They were about as acceptable as fried eggs 
on the seventh successive day, yet I was forced to eat some- 
thing or could not possibly stand another watch. Besides, 
the bean has been considered standard since time began, 
and to eat it is largely an expression of patriotism and sat- 
isfaction with the established order of things. Our sea 
coo k — better known as the First Lord of the Galley — stood 
up for the bean whenever it was attacked from any quar- 
ter. Our comical steward swore by the Irish potato because 
he could disguise it so easily, — by mixing with salmon, 
corned beef, soup, hash, salads and other things. However, 
the sailors do not get salads often; and when they do they 
always get red pepper and raw onions. Our First Lord 
of the Galley insists that sailors don't rate much, and lets 
them know their place whenever possible. He always fed 
himself well, it was openly charged; ate dessert, peaches 
and pears in the hold while the crew were eating their 

At the table we did not waste much time on etiquette. To 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

wash your face for breakfast during a hurricane was con- 
sidered a decided economic disutility; then we didn't care 
much whose place we occupied just so we got a mouthful 
of grub. But one thing we always insisted on, and that 
was for a man to remove his headgear at meals. It didn't 
make any difference whether a fellow had on any pants or 
not, but he musn't presume to wear a white hat or a watch 
cap. Everybody would howl him out of the compartment. 
Wednesday continued rough, but Shorty insisted that the 
deck hands should wash down deck as usual. He claimed 
that our executive officer would fuss if he saw cinders 
around the smoke stacks, but Bullard, who used to be cap- 
tain of a tugboat in the East River, opined that he would 
never see them. Seemed like all our chief petty officers 
had out forked sticks for their men. The gunner's mates 
had to remove gun covers and grease the guns, the heaves 
were ordered to shovel more coal, and the engine room force 
to do repair work on the side. Looked like time for the 
yeomen to get busy, so our other yeoman started shining 
a brass stanchion with emery paper, while I tied to the am- 
munition hoist abaft of the seamen's compartment hatch 
and began to prepare a survey on the eggs that had gone 
overboard the day before. When we survey things it is 
first necessary to fill in a form containing a request from 
our surveying officer to our commanding officer for the 
survey to be held. This form is heavily signed, counter- 
signed and witnessed, whereupon our commanding officer 
addresses a form permission or order to the surveying of- 
cer, also heavily signed and countersigned. The survey- 
ing proper consists of giving the history of the article as 
far back as it is known — when received, when lost or dis- 
carded, cost, characteristics in use, etc., etc. As I was es- 
timating the age of our eggs our junior lieutenant, formerly 
pr\ rfZr'iency expert in New York who manufactured cellu- 
loid collars, some of which have quite a vogue in the ward- 
room, came along and asked what I was doing. I told him 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

and he seemed very much interested; wanted to know all 
about our system, how I worked the job and how it worked 
me. I explained that the job had been wished on me by 
our ensign, and that while business methods were new to 
me I was picking up ideas fast. I was continuing the sys- 
tem which I found in vogue when my predecessor jumped 
overboard, — and really was not responsible for it. He asked 
a good many embarrassing questions, against which I braced 
myself and tried to answer. 

"Could you tell me instantly how many hen eggs to the 
e gg y° u have aboard?" he inquired. 

"Heavens, no!" I exclaimed, almost forgetting that I was 
in the presence of an officer. "A good many of our eggs 
are duck eggs, and there are some guinea eggs, too." 

"Could you tell me how old the mackerel is in the hold?" 
he persisted. 

"Not exactly, sir," I replied uneasily, "but it must be 
pretty old. The crew won't touch it any more." 

I gained a little advantage by warning the lieutenant to 
look out for a wave that was headed our way, but he 
kept on. 

"You could not tell the age of your mackerel or the ex- 
act number of your eggs unless you kept a perpetual stock 
record, could you?" 

"I suppose not, sir," I answered, wondering what a per- 
petual stock record could be and shuddering at the thought 
that it might have to be installed. 

"I guess I had better investigate the yeoman office to see 
just what you've got, if anything," said he coolly, and our 
executive officer, who had come up in time to hear part 
of the conversation, hit us again: 

"Two yeomen hammering on typewriters will never win 
the war." 

Our executive officer always considered yeomen a sort 
of necessary evil, but we had managed by painting the of- 
fice once to forestall a searching investigation, so that when 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

the officers came below thereafter they would only sniff con- 
temptuously. I started to say that I was in favor of a 
more vigorous policy myself; that our side could do a great 
deal more fighting if we only did less bookkeeping and note 
writing; and that it would be a distinct public service if we 
could make reports annually and spend the rest of the time 
digging for the enemy. A hot siege of correspondence, for 
instance, had once upset our war plans considerably. Our 
superiors ashore wanted to put metal treads in our galley, 
claiming it would keep the cooks from slipping up; but we 
had tried them once and found that when they got wet they 
were more slippery than ice, banana peelings or anything 
you can think of. The correspondence would fill a book; 
we are carrying it yet. So with countless other musty rec- 
ords which we fear to touch; but at that I suppose we are 
contibuting a bit to the sum total of good, because every 
ounce of ballast counts heavily when we are leaning at 45- 
degree angles and higher. 

Our executive officer disappeared in the wardroom in 
time to close the door on a wave, and there reported to our 
captain that our $40 chopping block had just been swept 
overboard. He also said he had investigated strange noises 
in the galley and found a hind quarter of beef flopping 
around among the pots and kettles. 

"Sounded like the biscuits they cooked last week,** drily 
remarked the captain. "Looks like they never went to sea 
before, — the way they tie things down." 

Luckily our sea cook did not hear that remark, else it 
might have finished him. His record showed that he ren- 
dered valiant service as a coal heaver in the Battle of San- 
tiago, had gradually worked up to ship's cook, first class, 
and was entitled by virtue of so many re-enlistments to 
wear more service stripes on his forearm than an admiral. 
He possessed an originality that extended far beyond culi- 
nary affairs. The term "automatic boob" originated in the 
galley, being applied at every favorable opportunity to all 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

young mess cooks who ball things up to the dissatisfaction 
of their superior in rank. However, our First Lord of the 
Galley had his downs as well as his ups. He had incurred 
the ire of our chief petty officers by serving out too much 
cold food, part of which they claimed was raw. In their 
eyes he was the champion can-opener of the maritime world, 
and on this particular day they paid him a visit in com- 
mittee of the whole. 

"Look a-here," began the largest of the committee, with- 
out saluting, "get busy and send down some hot food. Cook 
it better. Snap out of your bunk earlier in the morning. 
No use to get in wrong with the crew. Do you suppose 
anybody would throw you a life-preserver if you went 

The chiefs were flanked by a liberal assemblage of quar- 
termasters, seamen, firemen and gunner's mates, including 
the Captain of the Hold, the Captain of the Wherry and 
the Captain of the Phonograph. All held on to something 
as we rocked about. 

"I would throw him the anvil," interposed a mess cook. 

The First Lord started to say something about "Chief 
Pettifogging Ossifers tryin* to stir things up;" he said no 
mortal could do more than heat water under the awful con- 
ditions, but he was told to pipe down and deliver the goods. 
A marked change came shortly. Evidently our First Lord 
considered the anvil. 

The wind had now shifted. It was boosting us from the 
port quarter, nearly dead astern, raising huge waves that 
carried us high and let us slide at an angle into the trough 
of the sea. As the elements continued to harry us I could 
notice a changing sentiment among certain members of the 
crew, — mostly the green material. Several expressed the 
opinion that we would soon break in the middle; it was 
only a question of time. Others were too far gone to have 
any opinion about anything, and lay helpless, clutching 
wherever they could gain a hold. These were attended 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

by their close friends, who were utterly unable to help. Our 
lawyer held to a table and scribbled on a pad. He was 
framing a poor devil's will. The recruits had long since 
forgotten about the U-boats, and would gladly have swapped 
our storm for one. A brave lad from the Middle West sug- 
gested that it might be well to throw out some ballast — 
too much water was flowing through the hatches to feel 
comfortable. He said we might spare a ton or so from the 
forward hold, which was crammed with smoked shoulders, 
flour, sugar, lard, assorted jams and jellies, evaporated milk, 
chipped beef and sea biscuits. Our Captain of the Paint 
Locker replied that he wouldn't give up any ballast, but 
that Shorty might, such as leather, bath bricks, soap powder, 
turpentine, padlocks, boot-topping, snap hooks and cut- 

"His rat guards could also be spared," asserted our jack 
of the Dust, who helps with the commissary. "Who ever 
heard of hunting submarines with rat guards?" 

A deck hand who has a righteous respect for Shorty 
passed the buck to the Engineering Department, which he 
said was about to sink the ship with enough truck to out- 
fit several auxiliary cruisers, and including solder bars, sal- 
ammoniac, bolts and nuts, brass unions, packing sticks, rat- 
tail files, tallow candles and flake graphite. None of the 
department people would give up a pound. The only vol- 
unteer was a seaman who said if necessary he could spare 
a guitar. 

Wednesday night our Doc ministered unto the needy, 
shooting half the crew full of candy pills, and Thursday did 
not look any better. The storm gave us a terrible pum- 
meling, and off in the distance our convoy was madly 
struggling like a devil's-horse dashing up a window pane or 
an ancient dinosaurus extricating himself from a hole of 
mud. Off our port beam the other destroyer lay mastless 
but grand, behaving like a hobby-horse, but never giving 
up the fight. My extra store of vitality returned at this 



1.— Prometheus, Smith, Lamson, Flusser, Reid, Preston, 

Whipple, Harvard, Stewart, at Brest. 2.— Corsair. 3 — 

Isabel. 4.— Noma. 5.— Hubbard. 6.— Isabel. 7.— Mine 

8.— Rehoboth. 9.— Harvard. 10 & 11.— James. 



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This point of vantage was used to sight things from 
afar and to knock sea-sickness out of "New Navy" men. 
Seaman Timothy Brown, author of "Dear Family 
Letters", is shown taking his post. 

Two of our galley aristocrats in a protective coloration 
and personal adornment scheme that suggests the evolu- 
tionary course of gold braid. "New Navy" men, do not 
smile ! 

"Mike" Tracey, chief water tender, and canaries 
bought in the Azores which hatched three little birds in 
the firemen's compartment during a fierce storm. 

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Seaman W. R. Guvton, of Defiance, Pa., was on the 
Tug Rehoboth, swamped and sunk Oct. 4, 1917, and the 
Yacht Aleedo, sunk by torpedo Nov. 5, 1918, off France. 


The excitement caused by the James' ramming was like 
swatting a hornet's nest. A sickening crash, our stern 
rose high, and we piled out from helow. 

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Give them the once-over, folks ! Here they are in their 
native environment, a straight-from-the-shoulder bunch 
who work when they work and play hard rest of the time. 

Capt. Slayton returning aboard on Dec. 15, 1917, from 
Madawaska (Konig Willielm II) in Quiberon Bay; 
rough water gave the boat crew a good taste of salt. 

After a sharp blow, A. J. Croft, H. M. S. Victory, de- 
clared: "Hereafter when I see an American sailor, I 
shall say. 'There goes a very salty man !' " 

Standing by the Wing Locker 

stage of the voyage, perhaps due to the fact that I had eaten 
two hard-boiled eggs and a sea biscuit, and in an unguarded 
moment I climbed to the bridge to watch the wonderful 
scenery. I say unguarded because it is a horrible thing for 
a gob to loaf around this sacred shrine. It is comparable 
to doing unauthorized work, or looking cross-eyed at a 
chief petty officer, or lounging on deck lost in a love story 
when brass parts are due to be shined. The bridge is re- 
served exclusively for the commissioned officers, the quar- 
termasters and the helmsman. Anybody else's feet are in 
the way and are apt to get stepped on. There would be 
only enough room for the quartermasters if the officers and 
the helmsman didn't play such an important part. Officers 
and helmsman are accordingly allowed a small space, with 
the further provision that the helmsman must apologize at 
stated intervals for his existence. 

I reached the bridge deck unobserved and was drinking 
in the glorious sight. It felt fine to be so high where noth- 
ing could hit you but a light spray, and I could eat that. I 
hooked my elbow around a metal support of the searchlight 
platform. The officers had no good handholds and were 
slipping about like drunken men on roller skates. Our 
captain was almost unrecognizable in a saffron-colored 
slicker that hung down to his heels, and on his head was 
perched a southwester to match. He reminded me of the 
old salt who swings an enormous fish over his shoulder and 
advertises cod-liver oil. They say our captain used to teach 
school and at little entertainments became expert in leger- 
demain, — that he could play card tricks and take bowls of 
gold-fish out of handkerchiefs and rabbits out of silk hats. 
Maybe he had conjured the submarines out of the ocean. 
It looked very much that way. 

Our Junior Lieutenant appeared to have unusually good 
sea legs, for he could stand with his arms folded, shifting 
from foot to foot, stolid and Napoleon-like. Our ensign 
was staggering under the weight of a life preserver and a 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

number of coats, — all bundled up like an Eskimo, with noth- 
ing of his anatomy showing but his eyes. 

Our chief petty officers hanging under the wings of the 
chart house had not shaved in nearly a week, and looked 
like they might have made good if given a trial with the 
modern Captain Kidd. Grotesque figures draped in horse- 
cloth outer garments topped off with hoods, aviator style, 
hovered wherever corners were. 

My picnic ended there. My unholy presence had been 
discovered by a quartermaster, a "meal ticket sailor" of the 
Old Navy. 

"What'll ye have, ye rumskullion?" he demanded fiercely. 
"A punch in the nose?" 

I looked for a hole to crawl into. None was handy, so 
I replied: 

"Please, sir, sparrow me; I did not mean any harm." 

He turned to get back on course and when he looked 
around I was gone. But before I left I saw our captain 
hand our executive officer half of an egg sandwich, having 
devoured the first half himself. I took the shortest route 
down, — bridge chart desk to Charley Noble, Charley Noble 
to quarter deck, — Charley Noble being the smoke stack 
that emits odors from the galley right under the nose of 
the searchlight platform lookout. Presently the officers 
gathered in the wardroom to finish their meal. The chairs 
were lashed around the table with ropes, and the officers 
stood shakily spearing at the various articles of food. Our 

captain was wrestling with a piece of steak it may have 

been army mule and saying he would like to trade it for 

a baked apple or salmon croquette. Our junior lieutenant 
was trying to dig into an orange with one hand, while our 
ensign was yelling into the galley for double-quick on a ham 

It is 24 hours since I have slept," declared our. naviga- 
tion officer, yawning. 

"I can't remember •when I slept last," returned our en- 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

gineer officer, "but I remember very distinctly having fallen 
out of my bunk five times. Some voyage, I call it." 

That night after chow we began to ship water in the 
seamen's quarters, until the deck had a good six inches 
which sloshed from side to side and stole into our lockers, 
keeping everybody up until nearly dawn. Jolly spirits 
helped matters as we baled; "The Bird" began to sing, 

We are jolly old tars of the sea, — yo-ho, 

It's a jolly old life for me, you know, 

And I'd rather be here with a keg of lagerbeer 

Than bouncing my girl on my knee, — yo-ho! 

"You're a cheerful liar!" piped a machinist's mate, and 
then several joined in the chorus. Our Filipino wardroom 
steward hauled out his mandolin and began to play. All 
our lights were turned on so we could see to arrange our 
things. No submarine could exist in such a storm. The 
ordinary rules of safety were suspended so we could save 
ourselves from a nearer danger. 

On Friday our chief quartermaster made the following 
entry in the deck log: 

"The storm continued. At 10:20 A. M. the vessel rolled 
so far to starboard that the water circuit in the circulators 
was broken, putting the engines out of commission. At 
10:30 the trouble was remedied and we proceeded on our 

Friday night Shorty rushed excitedly into the wardroom 
to announce: 

"Sir, it grieves me to report that we have lost overboard 
a set of running lights, a bow pudding, a set of oars, a boat 
cloth, a set of cushions and covers, a boat grapnel, an an- 
chor, 20 fathoms of chain, a bucket, a fire extinguisher, a 
set of gripes, a set of canopy covers, a deck and boat book, 
four boat fenders, two double wooden block swivel hooks, 

"Stop!" ordered our Captain sharply. "What in the 
world has happened?" 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

"That ain't half yet," drawled Shorty, who was now read- 
ing from a hastily-drawn list, all wet with salty spray. "We 
also lost, sir, two suits of oilskins, two boat cradles, two 
flag staffs, twelve vest life preservers, two circular life buoys, 
two monkey wrenches, a pair of ride cutter's pliers, a cold 
chisel, six spark plugs, two squirt cans and 24 emergency 

"Land save us I" shrieked our captain, throwing his hand 
to his head. "The motor-boat's gone overboard again!" 

"There was one other article," said Shorty, fumbling with 
his list. "A medicine ball." 

"What was the medicine ball doing in the motor-boat?" 
demanded our executive officer. 

"Some of the sailors slipped it in there; was to have played 
the natives a game on the day we shoved off." 

"Guess our baseball outfit was in it, too," suggested our 

"Maybe; I dunno for sure," answered Shorty as he beat 
it aft. 

Saturday dawned bright and clear. During the night we 
had lost our convoy, but after putting on 20 knots we picked 
her up again and steamed into our harbor, where Sweeney 
took the names of all who wanted liberty to test the Irish 
brand of grog. The sun warmed us up again and as the 
sailors pulled themselves together and swapped yarns about 
the deck the news of the birth of three canaries in the 
storm reached the wardroom. 

Our captain rang for our chief boatswain's mate, who ap- 

"Shorty, is it true that Mike's canaries hatched young 
birds Thursday?" he asked. 
Yes, sir. 

"Tell me all about it." 

"Three out of four eggs hatched, sir. The old birds had 
been settin* for nearly three weeks." 

"Good; I guess Mike gets the red suspenders." 


Standing by the Wing Locker 

"But the mother bird stepped on one and killed it." 

"Well, the others will grow up." 

"No, sir, — Mike just took the cage up on deck to sun. 
Must have been too cold for 'em." 

"The old birds will raise more, won't they?" 

"No, sir; it was this way: Mike let the mother out of the 
cage to stretch her wings and a seagull ate her up. All 
we got left is the father bird, sir, and somebody's done pulled 
his tail-feathers out!" 


Life Aboard Ship 


T is not often that a ship can boast of a sailor 
who, in addition to doing his regular work 
about the deck, can find time and inclination 
to write vividly and grippingly of the things 
he does and sees day by day; but in Timothy Brown 
the Reid had such a man. "Brownie" wrote from 
the Azores Islands and France a series of "Dear 
Family" Letters to his homefolks in Madison, Wis., 
that contain the best material of its kind we have 
been able to find, and we take pleasure in presenting 
it here after saying a few words about "Brownie" 

"Brownie" had graduated from the University 
of Wisconsin in 1911 and from Harvard Law 
School in 1914, moved away to Milwaukee, and 
was enjoying a good law practice when war for us 
was declared. His friends urged him to go into in- 
tensive training to become an officer, but "Brownie" 
declared he wanted to get into the game quickly so 
as not to miss any experiences or opportunities for 
useful service, so he signed up with the recruiting 
officer at Milwaukee as a second-class seaman. 
From there he proceeded to the Brooklyn Navy 
Yard, where he got his first touch of the life, fighting 
his way with the rest of the sailors into the chow 
compartments, but without any broken bones. This 
was aboard the Receiving Ship Prinzess Irene (later 
renamed the Pocahontas, and used to transport 
troops abroad), from which ship, on or about June 
8, 1917, "Brownie" went to become a member of 
the crew of the Reid. 

Having previously dined with tramps and kings, 
it did not upset "Brownie" in any respect to join a 
submarine destroyer of the so-called "Dungaree 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

Navy." He could either get along in peace with 
the crew or use his fists; and he could tell many 
so-called authorities things about seafaring they 
never heard of before. As a sailor he was always 
first to rouse out of his bunk in the morning, always 
lowest in the stifling dust of the coal lighter when 
the crew were coaling ship, and always the last to 
ask a hand on anything he could do for himself. 
He was advanced rapidly to the places of seaman, 
coxswain and boatswains mate; and then he stood 
the second best examination in a European port for 
advancement to temporary ensign as a regular of 
the establishment, and after seemingly unneces- 
sary delays he received his commission, in June, 
1918. "Brownie" was advanced again, to the 
rank of lieutenant (junior grade), with which rank 
he finished the war voyage with the Reid and was 
discharged so he could resume the practice of law. 
It is unnecessary to say that as an officer his orders 
were promptly obeyed with spirit, and when he left 
the ship he was given the glad hand by the entire 
crew and three rousing cheers. "Brownie" exem- 
plified the spirit of patriotic young America in the 
war, and it remains for some author who wants a 
good subject to take a hint from "Tom Brown at 
Oxford" and write fully of "Tim Brown at Sea." 

So get underway, "Brownie" ; tell our families like 
you told your own how we lived on the Good Ship 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

August 20, 1917. 

This has been a big day, for another mail came, with 
many letters and papers for the boys. I have read my 
letters and made a start on the rest. I am so glad to hear 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

from you all. Your letters are so much more interesting 
when you are at home than when you were shooting around 
foreign ports. 

Things are going along well. We have the most delight- 
ful temperature, both for working and for sleeping. We 
don't get more than our share of rain, but it usually comes 
down just after we have spread out our bedding to air. 
The place where we stay mostly while not at sea is at- 
tractive and most picturesque ashore, while the harbor life 
is always interesting, and the boats of the inhabitants are 
so well kept that it is a pleasure to see and watch them. 
There is one little schooner in particular that is a perfect 
joy and she is not a yacht, but a cargo boat at that. An 
old man owns and runs her, and spends his time shining 
and rubbing her up, except a few times a day when he 
crawls into his dinghy and sculls himself around the har- 
bor, or ashore for a bottle of red wine. He is known to us 
as Robinson Crusoe, and fits the part to a nicety, but Friday 
must have got away from him. 

Speaking of schooners, we passed one the other day with 
her name, "Bom Jesus," painted in big white letters on the 
stern. The crew stared and one man exclaimed, "Bum 
Jesus! What a hell of a name!" 

Funny things keep happening. For some time no one 
seemed to have a taste for spuds, and the same dish of them, 
boiled with the jackets on, came down from the galley for 
several meals. Of course in their many journeys they get 
rather dilapidated. One day they didn't appear. We asked 
the mess cook where they were and he said: "They done 
wore out." I guess they did. Anyway, our appetites re- 
turned and we are now eating a new lot. 

The old boat rolls quite a bit and pitches like a hobby- 
horse, but I will start a letter and tell you how glad I was 
to get a fine lot of mail day before yesterday. I have been 
busy ever since and this is the first chance I have had to 

A couple of nights ago I saw a beautiful sight at sea. 
The sea was full of sportive fish and phosphorus. We would 
plow along and the sea would get all milky, and gradu- 
ally lighter and brighter till a whole school of fish would 
come to the surface, and then — how the fire would flash! 
And we kept running from one school of porpoises to an- 
other, and you bet they made some fireworks, and I could 
trace their paths way below the surface by the white trails 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

they made as they plunged along. I never saw anything 
just like it, nor do I expect to. 

Night watches are always quite interesting anyway — at 
least the start of each and the finish of each are. The 
boatswain of the watch conies down and wakes you. There 
is no light at all, or at most one very heavily shaded, so 
you dress in the dark and go up on deck. It is dark there, 

too, except for the stars, but there is quite a little activity 

men coming off watch and others going to take their places 
pass each other, hanging on to the life lines — coal heavers, 
all tired and grimy, coming forward to the wash room with 
their pails, towels and clean clothes; engineers trying to rub 
off some of the oil with handfuls of waste; and deck hands 
all bundled up in pea-coats or oil-skins and wearing life- 
preservers. There is a little crowd around the galley 
where the new watch gets a cup of "Java" (coffee) and 
a sandwich, and the old watch stops to take a smoke and 
discuss something that has been sighted, a submarine lying 
in our course ahead, or to kid the unlucky one who re- 
ported a "light" that later turned out to be the moon. Then 
the ship quiets down for another four hours, and those who 
have been relieved go below, where it seems warm and 
stuffy after the cool night air; and they get undressed (some 
of them) and pile into their bunks. Pretty soon someone 
starts to talk in his sleep, but not enough for you to learn 
his secrets, for he is mixing Portuguese with his English; 
and you try to find some way to lie so you won't roll around 
or out of the bunk; and the cups and dishes clatter in the 
mess lockers and something slides off the range in the gal- 
ley and bangs on the steel deck like a giant hammer in the 
establishment of Vulcan; the ship's cook swears and the 
sea thunders on the bulkhead next to your ear; then the 
sun comes down the hatch along with the boatswain, who 
shouts, "Up all hammocks! Arise and shine! Where do 
you think you are — at home on a furlough?" You take 
a wash, the mess cook brings down the beans and you go on 
watch again. 

I am not leading the bloodthirsty life you might imagine. 
In port my life is about as hazardous as any of Bernard's 
boatmen, and at sea, standing watch in the crow's-nest and 
leaning up against a mast is not as dangerous as leaning 
against a lamppost at home, for here there are no runaways, 
or building material to drop upon me. You have no doubt 
been reading some of the newspaper stories back home, and 
imagine that we go around with a blunderbuss in one hand 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

and a belaying pin in the other, with a cutlass between the 
teeth, looking for Germans equipped with even more ter- 
rible and scientific weapons; but while we would be glad 
to find the German and hit him with anything we could 
reach, the fact remains that we find little opportunity to imi- 
tate Captain Kidd. Our existence is almost pastoral and 
idyllic in its serenity. 

I am still feeling fine. Lots of love. 

• • • 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

September 2, 1917. 

A quiet Sunday in port gives me a chance to start a letter* 
My clothes are washed, but frequent rain squalls keep them 
from drying on the line back aft. I usually go to sea with 
a locker full of wet clothes, so it will not be any surprise 
to me to get under way. It is always fun to start out to- 
sea again, though, wet clothes or not, and it is fun to come 
back to port, too, and get a good night's sleep with no roll- 
ing and the air ports open and work enough to give you a 
real appetite. Then we stay in long enough that I am 
ready to move; so you can see that things are arranged 
just right. The only drawback is that sometimes we go to 
sea with the decks and compartments dirty, and that is bad, 
because there is never a real chance to get cleaned up 
properly while we are under way. On the big boats work 
goes on pretty much as usual, but with us, about all we can 
do is to stand watch and look for trouble until we come 
in again. We are not usually rushed in that way, though. 

Somebody bought three rabbits for mascots the other day 
and they have a box on the fan-tail near the firemen's com- 
partment. I don't know as rabbits are very good mascots 
for a man-of-war, but if association with the "black gang" 
doesn't make them tough, it will soon kill them, so my 
worry is purely academic. Our Executive Officer has or- 
dered the rabbits put off the ship, saying, "Who ever heard 
of trying to raise rabbits on a destroyer?" but I suspect the 
real reason is that they got into the ice box the other day 
and ate a plate of lettuce that had been reserved by our 
wardroom steward for him. Speaking of pets, another sai- 
lor bought a puppy for two dollars, but after lugging it 
around for a few hours, part of the time slung by the legs 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

over his shoulder, he traded it to a bum-boat man for a 
ten-cent watermelon that he could carry on the inside of 

There is another boat in the harbor somewhat larger 
than we are, and today she had a concert on board by a 
local band. "Hail, Columbia I" sounded pretty good from 
where I sat. As they were to windward, we could hear 
pretty well, till rain drove the band below. Mr. Mendels- 
sohn's battle song was also rendered with spirit. The other 
pieces did not fit in with anything I had heard before. 

It is mighty nice here this evening. I have had a good 
bath in my pail, had plenty to eat and enough pulling trips 
in the wherry to enjoy the grub, and now I feel just tired 
enough to be contented. My clothes are scrubbed, today 
was pay-day and I have no anchor watch to bother about. 
C'est la guerre! 

A good breeze comes in through the port, and outside 
is a harbor full of ships with many foreign flags and a 
sprinkling of our own. On the other side is a little town 
full of low buildings with bright-colored walls and roofs and 
picturesque country on the steep hillsides behind. The boat 
rolls just enough to be rocking me to sleep. My friends 
are sitting around writing and reading or playing cards 
or acie-deucie, a game on a backgammon board. I'm glad 
nobody raised me to be a soldier! And maybe we will be 
broken out at midnight and pitch around outside for a 
week, and the soldiers in their nice, muddy dugouts will say, 
"God pity the poor sailors on a night like this!" 

Lots of love, TIMOTHY. 

* . * * 


At Sea, July 29, 1917. 

Today is Sunday — warm, and not too much wind to be 
in comfort anywhere on the ship. I have stood my morning 
watch, washed my clothes, eaten a good dinner, and am now 
waiting to go on watch again, from 4 to 8 o'clock this even- 
ing. Then I will take a bath and sleep until 4 o'clock to- 
morrow morning. 

Yesterday I saw a beautiful bark going along with a 
15-mile wind on her quarter. She was one of the most 
wonderful things I ever saw. Do you know the names of 
her sails) I do. I enclose a drawing I made of her. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Our regular routine still keeps on; stand watch, sleep, 
scrub clothes, make the ship tidy, eat and loaf; study if you 
are ambitious and wakeful at the same time. In port, of 
course, there is more work daytimes getting ready for sea 
again, and less standing watch. In the gun drills I am still 
being shifted around to see which one of several jobs I can 
be most useful at. Lately I have been acting as "talker." 
He stands on the bridge, does some of the work figuring out 
the range of the target, and hollers the result to the guns, 
via the speaking tubes. The position calls for one whose 
voice carries clearly over the tube and who can figure with- 
out being rattled. I don't know how long I will be tried out 
there. The last one on the job was not able to make him- 
self understood clearly, so they are trying me. 

The other day I asked to take the wheel and was allowed 
to do so for a while. I did not steer a good course and 
found it was quite a trick. The ship swings around and 
yaws a good deal, and of course you can't feel her, as the 
wheel only controls the steam steering engine. I think it 
must take some practice to learn just when to act to keep 
her steady. The stunt, of course, is to keep a "lubber's 
line" on the binnacle opposite that point on your compass 
card which is given you as your course. I am going to try 
again and get what practice I can at the wheel, so I will be 
better than I am now when an extra man is needed there. 

The last time we coaled, we did so from lighters, and one 
of them was an old square-rigger. She must have been very 
handsome once, and still has the remnants of an elaborate 
figure-head, and a most beautiful sweep to her bow. She 
made me think of an old actress who had turned property 
woman when she got old, and was trying to help the new 
generation make a good performance. 

I got a scare the other night. I was on watch, and there 
was a lot of phosphorus in the water. Suddenly, from about 
50 feet away a white streak shot through the water toward 
our side, right below where I was standing. I guess it was 
a large fish. I thought it was a torpedo, for I hollered, "Hi, 
look at that!" The officer of the deck asked what the trou- 
ble was and the bo'sun's mate said, "Brown got a little 
scared about a fish, sir." Brown was more surprised than 
scared, but if I had had time I would have been a good deal 
more scared than I was. I will be scared next time, too. 

We have a Maine Yankee for one of our cooks. The day 
he came aboard he told me he was a brick-layer by profes- 
sion, and was a poet in disguise. 1 thought my disguise was 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

probably about as perfect as any one's, and to prove it I 
borrowed the yeoman's typewriter and hammered out a 
poem. One of the men posted it on the bulletin board, 
where it was received with more appreciation than my ef- 
forts have always had, much more than it deserved. The 
men said, "Brown has written a good piece; have you seen 
it?" and the officers asked the yeoman to make some copies. 
People look at me as though I was the three-legged boy, and 
quote parts of it around the deck. I have sworn off now 
lest they say that as a sailor Brown is a good poet. 

Sailors have a wonderful fund of information. It is simp- 
ly inexhaustible. Bullen noticed this when he went to sea 
on the Cachelot, and it is still so. They have told me that 
the British West Indies is that part of South Africa that the 
English took from the Boers. That piece of combined geo- 
graphy and history is hard to beat. It makes arguing diffi- 
cult. The specialists are certainly posted in their fields, 
though, and are extremely kind and good-natured in giving 
their time to explain things to me, when I can think of a 
question sensible enough to ask. 

The man who knows the sea and sailors and ships is John 
Masefield. I have often wished that I had along my copy of 
his verses, for they just hit things, and being so appropriate 
it would be easy to learn the whole lot of them by heart. 

I am having great times. Just now I think of all the fun 
I have had sailing and at football games and all the good 
picnics and parties I've been to, and when I get home I'll 
certainly have something more to remember that doesn't 
happen to everybody. I wish I could tell you where we 
are and what we are up to. I think you would all be proud 
to have me here and would tell everybody, and your in- 
sides would clasp hands, as mine do. 

With love to all, 



Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

August 5, 1917. 

The last time I had liberty I took a long walk out from 
the town where we stopped and saw something of the coun- 
try. The inhabitants were well brought up and took off 
their hats as we passed. I took the walk with George Zie- 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

mann, one of our chief petty officers, who is from Oshkosh 
and of course knows the people I know. The walk was ex- 
tremely interesting, but we went too far and had to hit up a 
stiff pace to get back to the ship on time. That was four 
days ago, and my shoes are lame yet. The shoes will soon 
be forgotten but I shall always remember the walk. 

The last two places we have called have been made 
pleasant by the fact that the coaling has been done by local 
talent. I am convinced that that is the best way, for the 
natives are wonderfully fast. Of course I do not sit around 
and watch them do it. There are always plenty of things 
that need to be done, and which ordinarily we do not have 
time to do. Cleaning the side was the latest one of these 
odd jobs. The cleaner stands on a guard rail at the water 
line, four or five inches wide, reaches up to the deck with 
one hand and hangs on to the tiller rope, while with the 
other hand he dips a swab into a strong solution of cleaner 
and cleans the side of the dirt and the grease that has been 
accumulating for centuries. A companion quickly rinses 
off the solution so it won't take off the paint, too. This 
preparation takes the dirt off your hands even better than 
making bread does. 

I was surprised to notice the other day that, even though 
there was a fairly heavy swell, I wasn't conscious of the mo- 
tion unless I paid particular attention to it. I suppose that 
means I am getting my sea legs. I hope so, for the walk 
convinced me that I had lost my land ones. Another thing 
I realized yesterday, for the first time, was how common- 
place things have become, which a little while ago would 
have seemed strange enough. For instance, as I was taking 
my afternoon nap on my favorite couch (an ammunition 
chest on the port side of the fo'castle) I was awakened by 
a shout from the lookout, and peering between the range 
finder and No. 5 gun, I saw, two points off the starboard 
bow (deleted by censor). 

Doesn't that sound romantic? But it needs a good loud 
yell to wake me up. Just the same, there is a romance 
about the sea that has grown on me. 

I have not been disappointed about my anticipations on 
it. Of course there are bound to be times when I won't 
like it for a bit, but I am sure that after I am through here 
I will often be homesick for the feel of it. We have been 
lying near a good-sized English bark and I have got a lot 
of pleasure in trying to puzzle out her rigging as well as I 
could. I would surely like to make a voyage in her and see 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

if the romance of sails stacks up as well as the romance of 
the sea has done. 

With love, 



Ponta Delgada, Azores, 
August 11, 1917. 

I will start another letter without any idea of when you 
will get it, and add to it from time to time until I get an op- 
portunity to post it. I last wrote and mailed a long letter 
covering about three weeks' time, a couple of days ago, 
which I hope reaches you safely. 

Things are still going well with me. We are somewhat 
shut off from news, even war news, and I wonder a lot what 
is going on. Of course, things that occur in our own little 
district filter down to the crew with many modifications on 
the way. Information of this character — rumors from the 
wardroom, etc. — are tales brought from shore and are known 
as coming "straight from the scuttle butt." 

I saved a lot of papers to wrap things in, and now I am 
going over them again with the greatest attention to detail. 

Today I went over the list of people from the state who 
are at Ft. Sheridan and was surprised to see how many I 
knew from the state at large. Before, I had read only the 
Milwaukee and Madison lists. My friends certainly came 
across in pretty good style. It tickles me when I think of 
them trying out at Ft. Sheridan and maybe not getting com' 
missions, and anyway, having to wait a long time for an 
army to be raised, while I struck luck and am busy almost 
at once where I hope it is counting, and am getting my 
training as I go. I'll bet that in the long run I'll be of as 
much use this way as if I had held off for the more high- 
sounding job so many advised me to wait for. I am lucky 
in another way, and that is, being on a destroyer where 
there is a real fo'castle. On a battleship, of course, the 
crew's quarters are more or less all over the ship. Here we 
are all together just like in the books, and it is really a good 
deal of fun, and is surely an experience to be remembered. 
If the food is a little bit slow in coming down, the more ex- 
uberant members gather around the ladder and yell swear 
words at the cook up through the hatch, while all the rest 


T. Brown used to say a great time can he had in Brest 
by walking around. A good many folks, however, 
squander a franc to ride the ferry to Plougastel. 



One of our doughty firemen (who will be recognized 
by his shipmates) dons his Easter sox and takes a siesta 
on an ammunition box. 

In this group we have the "glad bird" and the "sad 
bird" (suffering from nial de mer) and a score of other 
types between the two extremes. 


No matter what the conditions may be, the sturdy Bre- 
tons find time for recreation. On a Sunday afternoon they 
go promenading through the streets, the woods and fields. 


Deep down in the forecastle, well up on deck and in the 
dizzy heights of the rigging you can hear them sing, 
"Begone dull care, for we are sailor men!" 


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Monsieur Paul LeDantec, pilot loaned to us by the 
French government, guided us through narrow channels 
and proved to he an all-round good scout. 


Seamen "Danny" Hughes and "Rag Doll" Cavannaugh, 
painting the side one day, went adrift, but by excellent 
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Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

pound their plates with their knives, and howl like hyenas. 
It is also like a bear pit at the zoo. 

We have a funny little mess cook named Chisholm, aged 
I 7. He is just out of short pants. It is great to see him 
come down the ladder with dishes of food in both hands. 
He sits on one rung and shifts his feet, one at a time, to a 
rung lower than the one he is standing on, then slides his 
seat until he bumps on a new rung. He can come down 
pretty fast that way, and as he hops down with both hands 
holding up dishes with a pleased smile on his face, he looks 
more like a performing dog than anybody has a right to. 

Many of the boys are getting their heads shaved. They 
look like small-town cut-ups, but in spite of that the epi- 
demic seems to be spreading. 

Today I had work of the kind that I like, splicing and 

whipping lines and fixing up a wind screen for one of the 
lookout stations. It is fun to sit up high somewhere and 
swing your feet and fool with a nice piece of line. The 
trouble is that the work to be done is nearly always just to 
lee of a smoke-stack and the Black Gang usually seize the 
opportunity to work up a smoke screen or blow a tube. 

I hope father is missing hay fever this year. I haven't 
had any yet, but it may be a little early! 

As ever, TIMOTHY. 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

August 12, 1917. 


I will write just a line and get it off as soon as I can in 
the hope that it will catch a mail which I expect will go 
home. A ship came today bringing letters. 

Yes, I am a seaman now. No, it doesn't bring any no- 
ticeable change in duties. On these little boats we are 
all more or less utility men. The only difference that I 
know of is an increase of $2 per month in pay, and we 
haven't been near a paymaster since I was rated! I ap- 
preciate the promotion, though, as a certificate that my 
work has been cared for satisfactorily. 

With love, TIMOTHY. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

August 15, 1917. 

My interest still keeps up and I see new and interesting 
things every day. I have seen a good many armed mer- 
chantmen of various nationalities, and notice that they have 
their flagstafTs very far forward so as not to interfere with 
the fire of their stern-chasers. It looks queer at first to see 
the colors any place except the stern. Most of these ships 
carry pretty good sized guns and look quite adequately 
protected, assuming that they are able to see the submarine 
at all. 

I have not been sick in the crow's nest or anywhere 
lately, nor have they dug up new jobs to make me ache 
in new places, so I guess I am getting broken in. There is 
a little too much water coming in through the port, so I will 
have to secure things and go on deck and write some more 

With love, TIMOTHY. 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

Sunday, August 18, 1917. 


I have not had much time for writing the last few days, 
not because there has been nothing to say, but because 
work has taken up even more time than usual. As we get 
further into the war, things tighten up somewhat, and lately 
we have had to work Saturday afternoons and Sundays the 
same as the other days in order to keep the old boat where 
she belongs. Every time we go into port there is a lot of 
coaling to be done and little things to be fixed up. 

As soon as the coaling is over, cleaning ship, scrubbing 
the sides, and sometimes painting is necessary, and we are 
on the go now to such an extent that we have to put in our 
spare time as well as our regular working hours in order 
to get finished by the time we have to get out again. Often 
we move at short notice with the work half finished, and 
have a rush to get things stowed and secured for sea by 
the time we get outside. There is always a little thrill 
about going out unexpectedly. Of course in the crew we 
don't know anything, and that makes it more exciting when 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

we hear the cry, "All hands get under way I" Sometimes 

it comes in the night; then the petty officer of the watch 
comes down the ladder with a flashlight and shakes each 
man. We dress in the dark (those who have removed their 
clothing or parts of it), then get on deck, where there is 
always a little light from the sky, swing in the boats that 
are trailing astern while we are in port, secure all loose ob- 
jects around the deck, then all up on the fo'c's'le to assist 
in the ceremony of hoisting anchor and getting it aboard. 
By that time the "black gang" (firemen and machinists) 
have the engines turning over, and out we go. Our tur- 
bines run so smoothly, and I am so interested that usually 
the first I know of our being under way is when we leave 
the harbor and meet the swell of the open sea. As soon 
as the anchor is secured, those who have the watch as look- 
outs are posted, and the rest after the odds and ends are 
cared for turn into their bunks again. 

The first couple of times we had alarms I was pretty 
wakeful after getting under way, but now I can go back to 
sleep quickly and be glad of the chance. Those who have 

the watch go to various points on the ship in the crow's 

nest, if it is getting light; the bridge, out on the fo'c's'le if 
the seas are not coming over; and keep a sharp watch for 
anything at all which may appear on the water. Turtles, 
porpoises, bits of driftwood, oil, etc., are all reported as well 
as sails and lights. The moon first appearing, is nearly al- 
ways reported as a light by some alert lookout. Subma- 
rines are apt to be most any place these days, and it would 
be foolish not to take every precaution, not so much for our 
own safety, but in order to get the sub before she can 

Sometimes we see something that looks like a periscope, 
and then there is more fun. The men go to quarters and 
the ship goes at it. It tickles me the way we don't try 
to sneak by, but go to anything that looks like trouble. Of 
course that is our job, and it is a good job. When the 
object turns out to be a bit of wreckage or other harmless 
thing, there is a curious feeling of mingled relief and dis- 
appointment. By relief I don't mean relief from being 
keyed up. I don't believe any of us have anything but 
regret at losing out on a chance to improve our batting eyes. 

In the place where we now are, they have the best little 
cakes (especially the cocoanut with pastry rims), and when 
I get a chance to go ashore, which is something that doesn't 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

happen often to a deck-hand, I eat myself full at a place 
conveniently situated so I can see the harbor. Bum-boats 
also come alongside with most of the fruits I would get at 
this season at home — melons, pineapples, plums, grapes, 
and others that I am not used to, and they all taste good, 
and so far nothing has poisoned me. 

My friend "Nick" Carter, who was with me on the Irene, 
is still with us. He is a mighty man with the swab and is 
always cleaning up the place, of his own motion, and al- 
ways with the swab, and always in good humor. I know if 
we are boarded by the Germans he will make for the 
swabs instead of the cutlasses, of which we have a liberal 
supply, and the gunner's gang has to polish them. I feel 
that this duty will finally devolve upon the deck force. Still, 
it is more like a book to be shining a cutlass than a stanch- 
ion. Hines, one of our seamen, says to shine stanchions 
is against regulations, because the wear of the emery paper 
weakens the "structure" of the ship. Still, we do it. Some 
folks think the Dungaree Navy is not very regulation. I 
sometimes think so myself. 

With love, TIMOTHY. 

* * * 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

September 3, 1917. 

I got this note paper ashore in a box with the name 
"Roosevelt" on it. The Americans seem to be in favor 
here, and I believe Teddy stopped on his way home from 
the land where no lion did his duty. A fort and hill are 
named after him, which seems to be more than fell to Mr. 
Christopher Columbus when he visited an island hard by. 

I am still having a great time. Yesterday I made a lib- 
erty with Battey for a few hours in the afternoon. We had 
a pretty good supper in a restaurant, the change of cooking 
bracing us both up considerably. After that we took a walk 
and came to a place with a high wall and a gate. It looked 
like a park inside (the people here are noted for their villas 
and gardens), but an old gentlemen in livery would not lei 
us in. The wall stood in the way. Battey was in the news- 
paper game on the outside, and his training encourages him 
to butt in as a matter of business or out of curiosity. Mine 
as a lawyer make me remember the rights of property and 
the law of trespass, but when he scaled the wall I couldn't 


Life Aboard Ship— "Dear Family" Letters 

let him go alone, so I hopped over too. We got into a much 
prettier part that way and walked down a fine drive to the 
gate, but when the old man saw us he was crazy with rage, 
and came running up and grabbed us each by the elbow, 
and started us up toward a pink palace. When we got there 
he rang a bell and told the maid all about us. She went 
and brought a good-looking, well-kept gent whom I whis- 
pered to Battey we had better show respect. Evidently the 
owner of the villa had been called away from his supper, for 
he h-.d a napkin tucked under his chin; he said a few things 
to the watchman and waved us out. The keeper jabbered 
all the way to the gate, evidently playing for a tip by telling 
us what a narrow escape we had had, and we jabbered 
back. We could not understand a word he was saying, and 
he fared little better. We thanked him for showing us the 
place and introducing us to his boss, and passing him a 
European penny with a hole in it, came away. When we 
got down the hill to the town we bought postcards and asked 
the proprietor of the Cafe Cosmopolita where we had been. 
Our friend said we had visited the estate of the Marquis 
Joaquim Correa, which was the erstwhile stopping place of 
an old king of Portugal. I bet the king would have laughed 
to see us. Battey is well over six feet, built like a pair of 
newspaper shears, and the gate-keeper was shorter than 
I am. 

Still no mail. We expect some daily, but I am afraid we 
won't be in port when it comes. We have had two mails 
since leaving the states. A couple of ships came in today, 
but they were not "ours". 

Many happy birthdays, mother! Wish I could be with 
you to celebrate. 

With lots of love, 

* * # 


Ponta Delgada, Azores, 

September 11, 1917. 


I write this on my lap till the mess cook finishes cleaning 
the table. I've been pretty busy lately, for besides the reg- 
ular dcily work I have been working some on the study of 
navigation, as I had already written you, and a week ago our 
Chief Boatswain's Mate, ("Stump"), told me he had rec- 
ommended me for coxswain, the next step after seaman. He 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

broke the news in the classic phrase that he was "putting 
me up for a crow," — the crow meaning the eagle which is a 
prominent part of a petty officer's rating badge. I was 
immensely pleased and very much surprised, for, while I 
thought I was qualified for the rate of seaman when I got 
that, this new rate presupposes a knowledge of work be- 
longing purely to the navy, and I didn't think I knew any- 
thing about that. However, I studied up pretty hard so as 
not to fall down on the bo'sun, and when the time came I 
took the examination and was told yesterday that I had passed 
creditably; so now, as soon as some kind of office paper is 
made out, I will be a petty officer of the lowest grade and 
will have to acquire an authoritative manner. I know you 
will not be as surprised as I was at the promotion, and Aunt 
Millie and Uncle Frank will think I should be admiral by 
now, but I will be more pleased than any of you can be 
so as to make up. 

Life grows more pleasant all the time. The last time we 
were at sea we discovered some whales, — two, loafing along 
on the surface, and amused ourselves by trying to sneak 
up on them, as we were not in any hurry. Twice we got 
so close that I thought surely we would hit them. We leaned 
over the side and could look right down into their nostrils, 
or spout hole, or whatever it is, and the surf would wash 
upon their backs, and all of a sudden they would notice we 
were there and would hump up their backs and disappear 
right under our cut water. It was a long time before they 
got scared or tired of us. It was a most interesting ex- 
perience for us. If I had had a brick to throw I could have 
got one for you to put in a tub in the yard. There I go 
talking like a landsman again I "Irish confetti" is the proper 
name on our ship for bricks! 

For the last two days I have been painting our compart- 
ment and the wash room. It is a mean job, especially the 
overhead, in between the pipes and wires and deck beams, 
and the paint runs off the brush and down your arm; but 
there is something sociable about slapping on the paint with 
a bunch of fellows, and it was pretty good fun. Afterwards 
we had the phonograph on deck, and sat around on boat 
cradles and buckets, with the phonograph in the center on a 
keg of sea stores, and we heard all the latest music of last 
year. Somebody has named the phonograph the "Agony 
Box," but we would not be without it for all that. After 
the music I had an anchor watch, and after that a bath in 
my pail, and washed some clothes and turned in at mid- 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

night, with nothing to do till the morrow, and a fine night 
for sleep. 

We are still without mail and have no idea when any will 
reach us, or whether the department has forgotten where 
we are. All of us are anxious to hear from home, and the 
speculation on when the mail will come takes up almost as 
much time as discussion of things we have eaten or expect 
to eat when we get back home. Beer, properly cool, seems 
to get the most votes, but ice is scarce when you get away 
from the states. Having lived a while as a struggling lawyer 
in Milwaukee, I am considered somewhat of an authority on 
this subject. Alas! the poor sailor can't get beer at all now 
at home, and this reconciles many to an extended cruise. 

With love, 

* * * 


Brest, France, 
February 10, 1918. 

We got in yesterday after an unusually pleasant trip. We 
had a little rain the first day, but except for that the trip 
was a rest for us. Part of the time we ran close to the 
beach, and as there was a heavy ground swell, we saw some 
wonderful surf, but we wouldn't care to go swimming off 
some of the rocks we saw the waves breaking over. 

In the afternoon after we arrived I made a liberty, and 
of course the first thing I did was to go around to one of 
the restaurants for something to eat. I was late for dinner, 
but "Jennie" (the French girl who keeps the place) said 
she could cook some "uffs" (eggs) and coffee, and as I 
was the only customer, we had a great visit. "Jennie" knows 
all my shipmates and the place is a regular hang-out for 
them. She wanted to know when the batteau came in, and 
when I told her she said she guessed she would be rushed 
that night. 

"Jennie" is fast learning to draw the color line, which is 
very necessary if she wants to keep a select trade. It is 
also based on her own feelings, apparently, because while 
I was eating she confided, "You know, sir, that one Ameri- 
cain neggo came here and ate eggs and did not want to pay 
for them?" I asked her if she finally made him pay, and 
she replied, "No; I just said, 'If you do not want to pay, 
pfease go out and never come back. I do not want to see 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

you again. I do not like neggoes.' And he does not come 
back. He was very mad and I was much pleasure." While 
I was there several burly blacks applied for sustenance, but 
she blocked their entrance in a manner that made me un- 
derstand Verdun. After I had eaten enough to last me un- 
til supper, I hunted up a barber shop and got a very good 
shave from the man in charge; a man-boy, I might say, be- 
cause he was only 1 5 and still in short trousers. 

After buying a picture showing the deportations from 
Lille (buying it out of a window filled with gay bottles of 
Vin Rouge), and then promenading a bit, hunger began 
tugging at my vitals again, and I went to the cafe brightened 
by the presence of "Germaine." There I had steak and eggs 
and much conversation. Next I went to the Y. M. C. A. and 
had a row with the lily-fingered "canteen lizard" behind the 
counter over the prices he was charging me for some stuff, 
said prices being in excess of the ones in the advertisement 
he referred me to. After he had hollered enough, I went out 
and invested in a large bag of peanuts (the French call them 
cackowets, or something like that), took them to the caba- 
ret near the dock and handed them around the audience 
generally, including the proprietor of the place, the bar- 
maid and some of the fellows from our ship. At 9 I re- 
turned to our batteau; the quartermaster felt of my blouse, 
but he passed me when I told him I had only a few peanuts 
in a large bag. You can certainly have a big liberty here 
on a few francs, simply by wandering around and talking to 

The French dictionary reached me safely and is a great 
help. I looked it over thoroughly while at sea, and one of 
the first things 1 noticed was the sentence, "Do you love 
me?" A gob who was peeking over my shoulder asked 
how to say "Give me a kiss." Now, I was surprised at this 
gob, for he is a perfectly law-abiding individual, — one whom 
the French refer to as "serieux" — but I went ahead and 
looked as he took out his pencil and an envelope. Believe 
me, it was not there, so hadn't you better send me a dif- 
ferent kind of book? Perhaps I should write Mr. Funk, Mr. 
Wagnalls and Mr. Vizetelly about this! 

I see they have published news of the sinking of the Tus- 
cania in the Paris papers, so I suppose they have also at 
home. I hope no one we knew was lost on her. It isn't the 
soldier's game to be drowned, although it is all right in a 
way for the sailors. This event ought to have the effect 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

of making the Americans mad, so that all will want to come 
over to get even. 

Today is Sunday and we are lucky in being in harbor that 
all can attend church. Just think — no coaling to do and 
little of any kind of work except mending and writing letters 
home! Some of the fellows say they believe President Wil- 
son's stand against Sunday work is a good one, and they wish 
he would consider the other days in the week. This outfit 
is not perfect, but it happens to be the only one we have, 
and I like it. I would not advise anybody to choose it rather 
than the army because he might not be able to stand our 
special kind of grief at all, but if one likes sea lore he can 
get it on one of the gadgets, and I think it is the very place 
for me. 

With love to everybody, 

« * * 


Brest, France, 

March 18, 1918. 


Having reached port in safety, tied up, taken a very en- 
joyable bath in my bucket and helped to get a coal lighter 
alongside, I still have a part of the evening left to write 
you. I have much more time than news, although that is 
the fault of the censor, and if I do not tell all I know, at least 
you may comfort yourself by reflecting that the Kaiser is 
going to be left just as much in the dark as you are, and 
that it all goes to help win the war, along with raising pigs 
and saving cigarette stubs and putting on overcoats instead 
of more coal. 

I was in great hopes of finding mail waiting for me 
today but had no luck. I am beginning to expect the box 
of phonograph records you sent by express, as this is about 
the length of time it took the other box to come. I am look- 
ing for the tin box that Mother said she sent some time ago. 

We just had a very nice run and the ocean looked like 
Fourth Lake again, although it does not always do so. Weath- 
er is very much more pleasant in the spring than the winter, 
and there is quite apt to be a friendly sparkle in the water 
and warm sun on the back of your neck, instead of the solid 
gray sea and sky for weeks at a time. Even when it is 
rough the ocean does not seem to be as forbidding as it was 
a couple of months ago. I read in one of the last Literary 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Digests that you sent a letter from some one who evidently 
belonged to the forces we have been working with, as it 
dealt with a storm that we were in, and they ended up in 
about the same locality that we did, when the weather clear- 
ed. That was a regular blow, and the ocean did not remind 
me of anything we have around home at all. I wrote you 
about being washed overboard at the time, and I got a good 
idea of the power of water in other ways, too. For instance, 
a wave came and sat down in our wherry and when the 
water went away, the wherry did also, all except stem, stern 
board and strip of the gunwale, while another small boat 
was reduced to a lot of loose lumber but stayed with us. 
Every ship that was in it had quite a lot of repairs to make, 
but some way destroyers seem to be pretty tough and noth- 
ing really happens to them. This time at sea I got a chance 
to read part of "Pincher Martin," which I received on my 
birthday, and was much interested in it, although I did not 
consider the story a masterpiece. To tell the truth, I think 
that people who are not familiar with life on destroyers would 
appreciate it a good deal more than I did, for although the 
story is very accurate as to life on board, reading about 
that is not as much fun as living it. The conversation of 
the various sailors, judging by the examples given, is very 
different from that of our boys, both in manner and matter. 
It is a trick to produce conversation so it sounds life-like. 
For sailors, it seems to me that Connolly, who writes the 
stories about the Gloucester fishermen, does it about as well 
as anybody, at least in his earlier writings. 

The substitutions that have grown up in the navy for reg- 
ulation terms are peculiar, and some of them are pretty apt. 
Others don't seem to have any reason for them at all. As 
you know, every sailor is a "gob." If he is to be distinguish- 
ed from a marine, who is a "leatherneck," he is called a 
"flat-foot." Reason unknown to me. A coal-passer is a 
"heave" and one who has worked up in that line to be a 
first-class fireman or a watertender is an "educated heave." 
Anybody in authority is "the man." A further designation 
is made in references to commissioned officers. They are 
the men with the shiny shoes. A warrant officer is known 
as a "bolo man." This, I understand, dates back to the 
Spanish-American war, for on state occasions the said officer 
used to carry a cutlass and that, of course, was called a 
bolo as soon as the sailors found out what a bolo was. Nat- 
urally food comes in for many nicknames, but they are 
neither very nautical nor very permanent. "Sea-dust" for 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 

salt is about as typical as any. Various ratings and occu- 
pations have time-honored titles. A master-at-arms is a 
"Jimmy-legs." Maybe your recruiting officer at Madison 
can tell you why. I can't. A seaman who is detailed to is- 
sue provisions from the commissary hold is "Jack-of-the- 
Dust." A carpenter's mate is "Chips," and is seldom called 
by his own name. "Radio" or "Sparks" will get a radio 
operator. Destroyers are the "black boats." They were 
painted black in peace times. If you are in that branch of 
the service you are in the "Dungaree Navy," because at 
work we all wear dungaree suits made of overall material 
instead of the regulation outfits of whites or blues that are 
compulsory in the regular navy. 

I noticed that many of the terms we use are used in 
"Pincher Martin," or modifications of them; and the tradi- 
tional reasons given for such appellations are the same, thus 
showing that our service has had a growth practically par- 
allel to that of the British Navy, although I suspect the en- 
listed men would deny all similarity. 

This war is apt to bring in a lot of new terms. Our lan- 
guage across the water is undergoing a very extensive re- 
modeling, as I have said before. Everybody uses the most 
outrageous hash of mispronounced English, French, Span- 
ish and Portuguese tongues that you ever heard, and new 
effects in verbal camouflage are desperately striven after. 
When one of our liberty parties returns from the beach after 
talking near-French for a few hours and still thinking in 
that argot, it is most amusing. As far as I can see, it is an 
even break, too, for while none of us talk pure English any 
more, none of the inhabitants are talking pure French. Quite 
often a compromise is reached by the natives trying to learn 
some English noun, getting it wrong, and then the Ameri- 
cans taking up the French mispronunciation. For instance, 
"chicken" and "poulet" are no more. "Shicken" is the rec- 
ognized way of ordering, and the slang meaning of chicken 
also seems to have filled a long-felt want in the French vo- 
cabulary. When we first got here the French were suffer- 
ing from English influence and were saying "Compree?" for 
"Do you understand?" and "Comprenez-vous?" (I think 
that is correct.) Now they say mostly "You savvy?" which 
our boys brought with them from Vera Cruz and Tampico, 
although "savez" is good enough French, as well as Span- 
ish, but not the way it is pressed into every sort of duty. 
As you are not here to profit by the instruction, I guess you 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

•will find all this lesson in war-vocabulary pretty tiresome, so 
I will close. 

I hope you are all well. I am still feeling fine. After 
coaling ship tomorrow I shall feel still better, provided the 
day is nice. Lots of love, 

* * » 


Brest, France, 

March 26, 1918. 


The papers say the Germans have at last started their 
spring offensive and are running a side-show to boot by 
shooting at Paris with a gun that carries 75 miles. You 
are reading all about that now at home and of course are 
getting a lot more information about it than we are. I hope 
the offensive will be over soon, with good, big losses for the 
Germans and not too many for us. I wonder if the Amer- 
icans will be shifted over to help out. It must be quite 
an anxious time at home until we know just how things are 
coming along. 

I am going to tell you about a little fun we had the other 
day. We had been pretty well out to sea and were look- 
ing for land on the way home and wondering if we would be 
in time for liberty. It was going on toward noon and the 
watch was being relieved. The fellow who was to relieve me 
was just as slow as ever, so I was still on deck when the of- 
cer of the deck leaned over the railing of the bridge and told 
me to have the fo'c's'le gun manned. I started down to the 
main deck, passing the word to the boatswain of the watch, 
and hollered the order down the fo'c's'le hatch, and then got 
the little board I use in the talker job, and went up to my 
battle station on the bridge. From there I could see the 
officers all looking out over the water in the direction we 
were going; and looking the same way, I saw the smoke of 
a steamer on the horizon, and between us a low shape in the 
water which I knew to be a submarine. She was several 
miles off, but her conning tower and wireless masts showed 
plainly. In the meantime, the general alarm bells had been 
turned on and the word passed to the engine room and the 
fire room that we would want lots of steam; and I was pretty 
busy taking the reports from the different guns as they were 
made ready for action, and testing out the voice tubes to 
make sure that whatever orders I might have to pass would 
V>e clearly heard. Naturally I could not keep my eyes on 


Life Aboard Ship — "Dear Family" Letters 


s were 

the submarine all the time, and it took advantage of my du- 
ties elsewhere to fold up its wireless apparatus. When I 
got another chance to take a peek, it was starting to sub- 
merge. Our captain did not think it worth while to try a 
shot at the thing at the range we would have to use, and it 
went under, although all of us ''concentrated" to hold it up. 
I was awfully disappointed, for I had hoped that perhaps we 
had found one in some kind of difficulty so it would have 
to stay on the surface and maybe put up a fight before we 
took it. When it went under we estimated the distance it 
was away and then made for that spot at high speed, tim- 
ing ourselves, and a little before we reached what we judged 
was the proper place, we dropped one of our "ash-cans" 
(depth charges), which exploded with a most satisfying 
shock and a kind of thud and sent up a lot of water. Th 
depth charges sound just about like dynamiting fish at h 
or it used to, on calm Sundays when the game wardens 
away, getting out the vote. A couple of minutes later we 
ran through the oil slick which floated on the spot where the 
submarine had submerged, and we dropped another mine 
there, then cruised around and dropped two others in locali- 
ties that appeared good; and soon another ship (a yacht) 
came up at full speed on getting the good news from our 
signal, and she added a "can" of her own. Much to our 
disgust, we didn't see any of the oil and wreckage that all 
the stories mention. Evidently "Fritz" forgot to cough out 
any through his torpedo tubes! After some running around 
in circles, we came on home, arriving several hours later. 
We found that our wireless had had a wide circulation, for as 
we came by the other boats in the harbor their men hung 
over the rails and hollered, "Did you get her?" to which 
we replied, "Sure!" 

I couldn't see much justification for that reply, but I made 
it as often as anybody. We were all a little disappointed, 
for we wanted that sub for a pet most awfully, and it was 
hard to go away and leave it without being sure it was "fee- 
nesh." As we were about to secure from quarters and I 
was leaving the bridge, I heard our captain say to the other 
officers, "Well, anyway, I want you all to take notice that it 
was the 'Old Man' who found her for you!" None of them 
disputed the claim, so I guess it was the skipper who flushed 
our first real sub. 

After we were tied up and cleaning up from our trip we 
had great disputes as to whether we got her or not, and 
everybody felt good and swore that our ship was a "home." 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Then the boys started to brush up their blues for liberty — 

those who rated it and to make plans for the evening. I 

thought I would stay aboard and see if the mail orderly 
would bring anything off the beach for me, but I had lots 
of fun listening to the songs and laughter, for by this time 
the boys had convinced themselves that "Fritz" was surely 
destroyed, and were planning to try a raid on the Kiel Canal 
the next time out. One boy who was restricted to the ship 
for a breach of discipline was even allowed to go along with 
the crowd when he told the executive officer that he wanted 
to break the news of the submarine to his girl. When the 
party returned from ashore at 9 o'clock they were still in 
high spirits, and the story had grown : An aeroplane had 
seen the U-boat lying in pieces on the bottom of the ocean. 
The crew of the Reid wasn't allowed to pay for a drink any- 
where in town that night, and everybody accepted our 
version, except the crew of an envious destroyer which 
beats off a porpoise attack every few weeks. 

Well, the story properly ends here, and the affair was fun 
while it lasted, but since then we have received information 
which makes it appear that we shook up all the little von 
Tirpitzes in the time of their lives. The official report says 
"Pen-March-Pete" (for such was his nickname) has been 
badly damaged (undoubtedly by us) and that he ha9 put 
into a neutral port for repairs. 

I understand the families at home are all worrying about 
the ocean trip their boys have to make to get here. That 
is the thing that bothers the boys, too — all of them. It 
seems funny to us, because we know how we have to work 

to see a submarine at all one U-boat for sure in nearly 

eight months in the barred zones — but the doughboys can 
tell of many attacks on the way over. Attacks of nerves, 
I guess, induced by being on strange ships and seeing fish 
kicking up phosphorus in the water, and other things we 
are used to. When summer comes and it thunders, they 
will think they are shelled as well as fired at with torpedoes. 
They feel fine when they get on land, though, and act as if 
all their troubles were gone; and sometimes they hang over 
the railings of their transports in the harbor, before they 
have disembarked, and cheer us as we pass them on the way 
out. We know they will be heard from at the front when 
they get the word. 

This letter is much too long. Poor family! Poor cen- 
sor I Love to all, 



Tables of Convoy Service 

THE following incomplete tables are intended to give an idea of 
the convoy service performed by the Reid in company with trans- 
ports, merchant vessels, destroyers and other craft between 
July I, 1917, and Dec. 31, 1918. Vessels sunk or damaged by 
torpedo or otherwise are indicated by black face type: 

_,. _ _ „ . Gross Times with 

Old German Name New Nama Tonnage Tpeed Reid 

Grosser Kurfurst Aeolus 13,102 15.5 2 

Kaiser Wilhelm II Agamemnon 19,361 23.5 3 

Amerika America 22,622 17.5 3 

Neckar Antigone 11,000 14. 2 

Cincinnati Covington 16,339 14.5 4 

Prinz Eitel Friedrich DeKalb 8,200 15. 2 

George Washington George Washington__25,569 19. 4 

Friedrich der Grosse Huron 10,771 14.5 3 

Vaterland Leviathan 6o!oOO 

Konig Wilhelm Madawaska 9,410 

Barbarossa Mercury 10,984 

Kronprinzessin Cecilie__Mt. Vernon 19,503 

Prinzess Irene Pocahontas 1 10,893 

Hamburg Powhatan 10,531 

President Grant President Grant 18,172 

President Lincoln President Lincoln 18,172 

Prinzess Matoika Princess Matoika 10,500 

Rhein Susquehanna 10,058 

Von Steuben Von Steuben __ 

6,900(?) 23. 

First Trip 
Vessel Nationality to France 

Dante Alighieri Italian 5-10-'l8 

Due d'Aosta Italian 5-l8-'l8 

Great Northern American 3 - 1 2-* I 8 

LaFrance French 7- 9-'18 

Lenape American 5 - 1 0-* I 8 

Manchuria American 2 - 1 8 -* I 8 

Martha Washington Austrian 2- 1 0-* I 8 

Mongolia American 3- 7-'l8 

Northern Pacific American 3 -29-* I 8 

Patria French 6-23-' I 8 

Re d'ltalia Italian 5-l8-'18 

Rijndam Dutch 5 - 1 0-* 1 8 

Siboney American 4-23-' 1 8 

Wilhelmina American 5 - 1 0-* I 8 



Destroyer Reid 

9 — Macdon'gh _ 1 29 

13 — *Stewart __ 1 30 

14 — Truxtun ___ 2 32 

15— Whipple ___ 2 36 

16 — Worden ___ I 3 7 

17 — Smith 17 38 



Destroyer Reid 

—Burrows 2 

— Warringt'n_ 12 

— Monaghan _12 

18 — Lamson 33 44- 

19 — Preston ___24 49- 

20 — Flusser 29 51- 

22 — Paulding __ I 52- 

23 — Drayton ___ 6 53- 

24 — Roe 10 54- 

25— Terry 1 55- 

-Patterson __ 
-*Fanning __ 


-Cummings _ 





-McDougal _ 

5 7 — *Tucker . 

59 — Porter _. 
60 — Wadsw'th 
64 — Rowan _. 

66— Allen 

67— Wilkes _. 

68 — Shaw 

72 — Conner _. 
79— Little __. 










Times with 















___ 2 


81 — Sigourney _ 4 
91— Harding ___ 1 

94 — Taylor 1 

^Officially credited with subs. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Other Ships Nationality Character Reid 

Amphion American Merchantm'n 

Artemis American Merchantm'n 

Bridge American Supply 

City of Atlanta American Merchantm'n 

Calamares American Transport 3- 

Canopic British Transport 

Comfort American Hospital Ship 2. 

Cubore American Merchantm'n 

Czar British Transport 

Czaritza British -Transport 

Edward Luckenback British Merchantm'n 

Euripides British Merchantm'n 

Finland American Transport 

Freedom American Transport 

Gold Shell British Merchantm'n 

Harrisburg American Transport 

Henderson American Transport 

lowan American Transport 

Kentuckian American Transport 

Konigin der Nederlanden Dutch Transport 

Kroonland American Transport 

Mallory American Transport 

Manchester Castle British Merchantm'n 

Manhattan American Merchantm'n 

Maumee American Oil Supply 

Mexican American Merchantm'n 

Middlesex British Merchantm'n 

Montanan American Merchantm'n 

Nansemond American Transport 

Neches American Transport 

Nero American Collier 

Nokomis American Transport 

Nopatin French Merchantm'n 

Nyanza American Transport 

Ohioan American Transport 

Olympic British Transport 

Osage American Merchantm'n 

Pediladia Italian -Transport 

Pennsylvanian American Transport 

Plattsburg American Transport 

Praetorius American Transport 

Rappahannock American Transport 

River Otranto British Merchantm'n 

Roepat British Merchantm'n 

Santa Rosa British Merchantm'n 

Tenadores American Transport 

Tiger British Transport 

Ulysses British Merchantm'n 

Vauban British Merchantman 

Wabash American Merchantm'n 

War Python British Merchantm'n 

West Bridge American Merchantm'n 

Westward-Ho American Merchantm'n 

Wyandotte American Transport 


A French dirigible carrying crew of five putting out 
to hunt submarines, and in distance, a captive "caterpil- 
lar" which occasionally went to sea. 

[■mi j 


A quiet little game like the ones Mr. Osgood, the alert 
executive officer, used to raid when the crew's mess 
needed the money. 


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Frank E. Cooper, carpenter's mate, taken through the 
yeoman office porthole. His nemesis, Lieut. Smith, is 
probably lingering- on the forecastle just above. 


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Albert S. Denning, coppersmith, was one of the high- 
est-paid petty officers in the Dungaree Navy. He lived 
in the forecastle and he kept it lively. 


Homer Evans, oiler, is caught in bad company on the 
coal dock at Brest (heing- of Irish descent himself) and 
is warned to stay ahoard. 


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only Geo. 

E. ('"Possum") Johnson, gunner's 

It is 
mate, diked out in a full rig of storm-proof, wind- 
proof, fool-proof clothing furnished by Uncle Sam. 

"Tim" Brown will fill your place! Here's "Tim" as 
he looked after shedding the garb of a gob. We raise! 
a racket when he left for home. 



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On Apr. 1(>, 1918, the French Tug Hanneton ran us 
bow-on into the stone coal deck at Brest, and the dock 
did not budge. 

With The Sea-Going Poets 

By Timothy Brown. 

Oh, the meat is getting rotten 

And there's mold upon the bread; 
There's a smell around the ice-box 

That's enough to knock you dead. 
But with these things and some others 

I am game to take a chance, 
For we're steaming to the eastward 

And we're on our way to France. 

Oh, it's lousy in the fo'castle 

And there's scarcely any air, 

It takes mighty little motion 

To make you sea-sick there; 
Though it's very inconvenient 

To be heaving up your grub, 
Still, we're steaming to the eastward, 

And we're looking for a sub. 

When you go aft in the mid-watch, 

Climbing over bags of coal, 
Grab a dirty, sooty life-line 

And hang tight at every roll, 
Keep a look-out from the deck-house, 

Feel the vessel pitch and toss, 
While we're steaming to the eastward, 

For we're on our way Across. 

Draw your quarter pail of water 

And forget the taste of booze, 
And be careful that your letters 

Contain anything but news; 
Battle bravely with the bed-bugs, 

Little things don't matter much, — 
For we're steaming to the eastward, 

On our way to lick the Dutch! 


Hush little ensign, don't you cry 

You'll be an admiral by and by! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


By Harry C. Black. 

It's flies and sweat and coal dust, 
And coal dust, sweat and flies; 
Coal dust in your nostrils, 
Coal dust in your eyes; 
A lousy gang of rough-necks 

To make into a crew, 

If you wish to do your bit, 
There's a bit to do! 

Wait till your nerves are frazzled, 

Laugh as you get done in; 

Dwell amid the muck of it, 

The never-ending din. 

Do you dream of glory 

On the ocean blue, 

And do you wish to do your bit? 

There's a bit to do! 

Stories of this service 

Are better left untold; 

Who cares about the wretched tramps, 

Unpicturesque and old? 

Forget them, gentle reader, 

But here's a tip for you, — 

If you wish to do your bit, 

There's a bit to do! 

It's not the least romantic, 

You never hear applause; 

The muscle that's behind your fist 

Is what upholds your laws. 

Boredom born of steady grind, 

Tomorrow, nothing new; 

If you wish to do your bit, 

There's a bit to do! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By Harry C. Black. 

Steam into port, 

Steam out of port, 
Steam into port again: 

Sail into fog, 

Sail into snow, 
Sail into soaking rain: 

Roll up the seas, 

Roll down the seas, 
And count the storms by scores: 
Let the poets sing of war's romance, 

But I sing of its bores 1 

A girl lives here, 

A girl lives there, 
But "port girls" are the same; 

A painted cheek 

And a rat-like eye 
And a soon-forgotten name; 
Let poets sing of war's romance, 

But I sing of its shame! 

What in the Hell is the use of it? 

What in Hell, I say! 
Is a man a blithering, blighted fool, 
A joke composed of clay? 

Sail out of port, 

Sail into port, 
And drink the native wine 

Till the hero who is hymned at home 
Is simply a sleeping swine! 
Let poets sing their senseless songs, 

But I'll sing one of mine! 

It was always thus, 

It is thus today 
And tomorrow will be the same: 

Down with the weak, 

Up with the strong, 
For might you cannot tame. 
I can't fill up these forms for nuts, 

But verse is not the same, 
I can kick out this Kipling stuff, 

In a style to win me fame! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By Harry C. Black. 

Three thousand miles of ocean 

'Twixt you and all that's dear, 

Three thousand miles of ocean, — 

Lord, it's long! 

And it's hard to keep a-laughing 

And to joke just when you hear 

That every blessed thing has all gone wrong 1 

But still you keep a-laughing, 

Though you're bored, dog-tired and blue, 

Bored, — God strafe the Kaiser and his hate I 

To hell with early rising, take away the wat'ry viewl 

Jove, when the war is over 

I'll sleep late! 

There's three thousand miles of ocean 

To cross when it is done, 

Three thousand miles of ocean, 

Lord, it's long! 

And already some have shot their bolt 

And had their earthly fun 

And a shell it was that sang their burial song! 

But still you keep a-laughing, 

Hold your tears back with a sneer, — 

There's stupidity to swear at, and the crew. 

If a submarine should rap us, 

Will we forget all fear? 

Is the ocean quite as warm 

As it is blue? 

There's three thousand miles of ocean, 

Miles weary, rough and wet, 
Three thousand miles of ocean — 
Lord, it's long! 
And the things we can remember 

We wish we could forget, 

Forget dear days, now dead, forever gone! 

But still you keep a-laughing, 

Though your mirth is mostly sham; 

For God's sake keep a-laughing 

And do not give a damn! 

My lad, here comes an Admiral — 

We must give him a sa-lam ! 

Three thousand miles of ocean, — 

Lord, it's long! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By Harry C. Black. 

If promotion means nothing to you, 
And comfort you can forswear: 
If you're willing to be forgotten, 
And to work every day in the year; 
If you're fond of taking your chances, 
And the praise of Admirals you shun; 
Pick an eight-knot tramp of the N. R. F. 
Carrying coal on the Channel run! 

The job is a stranger to honors, 

It's also a stranger to shams, 

There's naught to win and your life to lose 

Midst its dirt, its dangers, its damns; 

But once you have laughed its laughter 

And the cynic has captured your soul 

You can smile at the rest as you do your best 

To reach an unreachable goal! 

My lad, there is nothing to it, 
There's nothing — and yet — and yet 
It's something to strive for nothing, 

It's something don't you forget; 

So if you're in for the hell of it, 

And you've got sufficient nerve, 

Pick an eight-knot tramp on the Channel run 

Of the U. S. N. Reserve! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By a Reserve Yeoman 

Have you seen the letter Six Six O, 
That arrived on board a week ago — 
Eight sweet pages for you to know, 
As merrily on your way you go? 

Full paragraphs with subs galore, 
And lots of three fat pages more, 
Superseding the one that came before, 
Crammed to the brim with gunnery lore. 

Instructions state that you should read 
The records of each past good deed; 
Of course they're useless, — that's agreed,- 
For so it states in that same screed. 

With seventeen yeomen standing by, 
A mountain of paper four miles high, 
Such appearances just cannot lie,— • 
The ordnance yeoman's job is pie! 

There's a daily test, and a weekly test, 
And a test every now and then; 
There's this report and that report, 
For the C. O.'s trusty pen! 

There's data here, and there's data there, 

And there's data on the moon, 

A berth in Anacosta waits 

For an ordnance yeoman soon! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

Bar Harbor, Maine, has won its fame, 
For its good old pork and beans, 

And Boston, Mass., will also pass, 
If you have money in your jeans. 

But when I speak of Frisco fair 

I always have the shakes; 
For the air is ever scorching there 

And the earth is full of quakes. 

And Colorado's a fine old state, 
And I've heard its history told, 

And many a man has met his fate 
While searching there for gold. 

Fried chicken meat is hard to beat, 
And honey from the South; 

The waffles that the Rebels eat 
Would melt in any mouth. 

They say the Rebels use too much 
Of grease in cooking things; 

But give me pot licker and greens 
And plenty of chicken wings. 

Savannah makes a specialty 

Of fresh-caught shrimp and rice; 

Hoboken has the swellest beer 
That was ever put to ice. 

The Portuguese are fond of cheese, 
The French are fond of wine, 

There are lots of places 'cross the pond 
For a hungry gob to dine. 

But when the people leave this state, — 
The good old State of Maine, — 

They one and all seem to think it great 
To get back home again. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

I wonder if 

You all have heard 
The wonderful story 

Of old Gay Bird. 
A noble beast 

He must have been 
When full of life 

And in trotting trim. 
He was brought to the island 

By a Bar Harbor gent, 
Who soon discovered 

His money well spent. 
For he seen the day 

When he could out-shine 
'Most anything 

In the trottin' line. 

He now enjoys 

A country home 
Where no one cares 

For skin or bone. 
His will is good, 

But I have a doubt 
If he will last 

The summer out I 

We can truthfully say 

If the end is near 
That we are not to blame 

For his short career. 
For he is favored 

In many ways 
Out of respect 

For his better days. 
But when he is dead 

And laid to rest, 
We really can say, 

"He done his best." 
With every stride 

And gentle will, 
He strove to fill 

His master's bill. 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

When evening's twilight shadows come 

A-stealin' o'er the hills, 
Oft-times I sit and ponder while 

My heart with longing thrills. 

I close my eyes and softly sigh, 

And visions come to me 
Of a home down in the wild-wood, 

I can hear the honey bee! 

I can hear the song-birds singing sweet 
As they flit from tree to tree, 

But best of all I see a face 
That's all the world to me. 

With curly rings of golden hair 
'Float in the summer's breeze, 

With roguish eyes so full of love, 
And lips that like to tease. 

Though I am many miles away, 
Sweet visions come to me, 

Of fairy face and cozy nest, 
So far across the sea. 

When stars are softly beaming bright 
From the gentle skies above, 

I waft on high an evening prayer 
And send to Her my love. 

I pray this fairy maid may keep 

Her fullest love for me; 
"Old Glory" from the galley flies, 

I fight for VICTORY! 


70,000 on a Submarine Destroyer 


(Inside the breakwater, Ponta Delgada, Sept., 1917). 

By Timothy Brown 

Nigger cooks a-singin' in the galley, 

Crew a-standin' round the galley door; 
In the dusk the signal-lights go blinkin', 

Talkin' back an' forth with lights on shore. 
Over toward the entrance to the harbor, 

Spots of red an* green go glidin' by; 
Overhead, like big, blind, clumsy fingers, 

Searchlight beams go sweepin' 'cross the sky! 

Sleepy ship a-tuggin* at her anchor, 

"Taps" comes floatin*, sweet an' soft an' slow, 
Niggers start to put away their music, 

Time for sailormen to go below. 
Bugle sounds, a-singin' through the darkness, 

Halyards gently tappin' 'gainst the spars, 
Overside the gurgle of the water; 

Foe' si' lookout dreamin' 'neath the stars! 


Gems of the ocean we call the Atlantic, 
Pride of the Portuguese, beautiful isles, 

Princess of nature in robes quite romantic, 

Sun-god looks downward upon you and smiles! 

Even in temperature, perfect in health, 
Leader in peasantry, grand are thy hills; 

Living so simply, untouched is thy wealth, — 
Hope for the future thy native heart fills! 

Columbus once landed on Santa Maria, 

The tale of the New World was told by his crew; 

And so will Columbus the Modern make freer 
The spirit of freedom that wells up in you! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

(By a Member of the Black Gang) 

Where salty waves are rolling high, 

And nearly reach the azure sky, 

Right there we're found, Friend Jack and I,— 

And everywhere there's need. 
In waters where the sub is bold 
And ships are worth their weight in gold, — 
'Tis there you'll find us as of old, — 
On the trusty "Centipede!" 

(In camouflage we give our name, 
Not like it's written on the scroll, 

The censor won't allow the same, — 
So let our batteau roll!) 

It's true she eats up coal like hell, 
And then, she's under every swell, 

But boys, she's there (the figures tell) — 

With all the beaucoup speed! 

They say the days of coal are done 

('Tis bear's grease makes the bronchoes run), 

But not the last, — Old "Twenty-one" — 

The bucking "Centipede" ! 

(Up, glasses, mates, — suds on your lip, 

Then champ the filthy weed; 
Smite any man that puts his ship 

Above the "Centipede"!) 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


Oh, great is France! You disagree? 
Come into frank discourse with me! 
One million and a half of dead, 

Just thirty to each gallant Yank; 
As many more saw gory red, 

Deep draughts of disappointment drank! 

You say the Frenchmen profiteer? 
Who wouldn't pay a franc for beer? 
And virtue likewise do you score — 

You've counted all the vicious well; 
Of proof enough what wish you more 

Than millions of brave Frenchmen fell? 

Oh, vice and patriotic fire 

Are strangers first and last, entire! 

Queer visitors and hosts, no doubt, 

Grew tired soon; and yet the French 
Have something left to think about: 

Four years in Madcap Woden's trench! 


Here's to Jack, the squarest gent 

That ever o'er a gang-plank went! 

Two-fisted, on the level, brave, — 

Hit up the lick, some life to save! 

You man the wheel, swish through the deep, 

A constant all-night vigil keep, 

To derelict heave welcome line, 

Steer safely past the floating mine! 

Fair history sings its praise to thee, 

You'll rest in Gob Eternity! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By Timothy Brown 

On deck all hands, and wash her down, then single-up your 

Lay aft, O Gunner, with your gang, and see about them 

"The engines, sir, are ready now!" The "Old Man" gives 

a cough, 
Then says, "Stand by; one third ahead; sound one long 

blast; SHOVE OFF!" 

Our brand-new H. B. pennant, mates, is trailing far behind, 
And a battle-wagon's ensign there is snapping in the wind. 
Out past the mole we proudly steam, then swing around to 

Go slipping down the Channel ways; "Kenavol" girls of 


Good-bye, adieu, and au revoir, we're homeward bound 

at last! 
The ground-swell starts to lift us high; Saint Mathieu's light 

is past. 
Pierre Noire is in the distance dim, Ushant is fading now; 
First, Azores; next, Bermuda, mates, then Charleston's on 

the bow. 

We took the old boat over, mates, to lick the bloody Hun; 
We've had a little trouble, mates, but a damn sight more of 

The sal Boche now is feeneesh, mates, there's nothing else 

to do, 

So we're going home to tell 'em how the Rolling Reid came 


By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

Some folks don't seem to ever know 
The proper place for them to go, 
But snoop around the ship all day 
Poking their noses in the way. 
If they would 'tend to their affair, 
They wouldn't smell things in the air; 
If they would try the galley game, 
They'd find the odors just the same. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By Timothy Brown 

Hark, hark, the dogs do bark — 

Berry is coming to town! 
He cooks them all in his iron pot — 
Fido, and Rover, and Towser and Spot, 

Bulldog and Pug and Hound. 
The galley range has caught the mange, 

It's had its fleas quite a while: 
Each man in the crew, when he sees a tree, 
(line deleted by censor) 

And we wag our tails when we smile. 
We had heard before of the dogs of war, — 

We're well acquainted now; 
They're long and narrow, with bright red skins, 
And round and smooth and they live in tins, 

And they're coming down for chow! 


(To "Bill the Biscuit-Maker") 

By T. Brown. 

Our cook, the hoy from Maine, has gone, 
Our Biscuit-making Bill has left; 

The Reid-boat knows his art no more, 
And we remain here all bereft. 

No song now lightens labors in 

The galley, where he reigned in state; 
The mess-cooks sadly peel the spuds, 
And Berry mourns, disconsolate. 

Gone is our cook, and never again 
Shall we with grateful gusto dent 

His biscuits; nor shall e'ermore scan 
His poetry, for Bill has went! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

I used to love the ladies so 

I did the best I could 
By not using the lights in the parlor 

Or burning the old folks' wood. 

We often took the old arm chair 

Through many a bitter storm, 
And there we did the bunny hug 

To keep each other warm. 

We've climbed the highest mountain tops 

And sat there by the hours, 
We've roamed through fields and valleys fair 

In search of the rarest flowers. 

I know a very pretty spot — 

We used to go there daily, — 
Where the birds were singing in the trees 

And the squirrels chattered gaily. 

But halcyon days are over now 

And it fills my heart with pain 

To think those days of gentle dreams 
Will never be again. 

I left her by the willow 

As I went away to war; 
Again I asked her for her hand, 

And again she answered, "Naw!" 

Oh, well, it doesn't matter much; 

I have a French girl, too; 
My girl at home would have a fit 
If she could see the things we do! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By "Bill the Biscuit Maker" 

I had a little sweetheart, 

Her name was Annabelle; 
She was a queen among the daisies, 

And I loved her, Oh, so well! 
We went to all the dances, 

After which we'd go and dine; 
I bought her silks and laces, 

And I bought her dresses fine. 
We were like lovers in a dream, 

Until one autumn day, 
A city guy with better looks 

Stole Annabelle away. 
When I recovered from my trance 

The wedding was all over, 
And I became 1 know not why 

A regular world-wide rover. 
My sweetheart Annabelle is gone 

To fairer land than this; 
I know he did not treat her well, 

Life held for her no bliss. 
For years I've hunted for that man, 

And I'm still hunting yet, 
And when we come together, boy, 

He'll get his fill, you bet! 
I swore to her I'd have revenge, 

And if we ever meet, 
Life for life he'll pay the debt, 

Because revenge is sweet! 

/ ^ /5 **7J 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

Verses Written at Sea 

(From Chart-House Poems) 


We write of pastures, birds and fish, 
Of caves and creeping things, 

Of gifts that fill the Christmas wish, 

The fate of tramps and kings. 

We sing of ships and lantern wicks, 
Of letters writ from home, 
Eschewing war and politics 
As with the muse we roam. 

We write of music, art and weather, 
And also states of mind, 
And then we pause to wonder whether 
The censor will be kind! 



Having time in Bermuda, I hired a bike 

And pedalled away down a shell-covered pike 

To the place Samuel Twain used to idle his time 

With musings all mental and writings in rhyme, 

And likewise where Kipling drew strength from the air, 

Or failing of ideas would pull out his hair. 

I stood on the rock where these notables stood 
And felt just the same as I otherwise would; 
No poem sprang out of the rock or the trees, 
And the nearest to song was the hum of the bees, 
So mounting my cycle, I pedalled away 
To see what was possible while it was day. 

I came to a sign which declared that Annette 
The Swimmer and mermaids from nearby had met 
In a cave of the hill to see which could swim 
And dive for the movies with greatest of vim. 
The guide took my money, but Annette the Fair 
Had slipped on her robes and departed from there. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

Another sign over a second cave said 
That all the cave-dwellers around there were dead, 
Except at this grotto, whose great stalagmites 
Furnished excellent setting for Anne in her tights. 
I turned to examine a third rustic sign 

That hung to the west from an ancient grape-vine, 

"Step this way," it began, "for Shakespeare arose 
At dawn for The Tempest', his yarn, to compose!" 

I looked around next for a sign that would tell 
How Adam and Eve on the island did dwell, 
And Crusoe found Friday a-pluming himself 
Long after old Adam was laid on the shelf. 
(P. T. Barnum, I reasoned, these ads must have writ 
In the days when his circus was making a hit, 
And he fooled all the people a part of the time 
By faking up side-shows and charging a dime). 

All skeptical now, a bright shilling I threw 

At the broken-down gateman, and then I withdrew 

'Long the pike whence I'd come, till a funeral loomed up 

Which blocked the slim highway at hour for to sup. 

I attended the service; the grim colored folk 

Stood by in gay costumes, and nobody spoke, 

And when it was over, I sped by the hearse 

Quite happy my outing was not any worse. 

I think of Bermuda as good place to go 
To romance a sweetheart who never would know 
That most of the high-brows they claim wintered there 
Never sighted the islands, or went anywhere! 

(Written at midnight by moonlight, Sept. 20, 1918) 

Moonbeams and starlight 

Symbolize the perfect night; 

O'er the ocean's face they dance 

And now they hesitate, to prance, — ■ 

Silv'ry spangles leap and race 

To rippled nook and resting-place. 

Starlight and moonbeams 

Say the world's at peace, it seems! 

And in the south the banks of cloud 

For peace and rest are perfect shroud; 

But peace is gone when daylight breaks,— 

Man sleeps a while, and then he wakes! 


With the Sea-Going Poets 


(Written Oct. 15, 1917, at Cardiff, Wales) 

"It is the law of England, Sir!" At right and left the cry 
Was sounded by the shop-girls as the sailors hurried by; 
The lights were dimmed at 8 o'clock, the doors closed with 

a bang; 
"It is the law of England!" and the bell in the church tower 


"It is the law of England!" cried the barmaid as she dashed 
The sailor's goblet to the floor; he stood there all abashed, 
And then he rushed another bar, his thirst for ale to 

quench, — 
"No ale until tomorrow!" chirped the sprightly little wench. 

"It is the law of England, and we take no risk with chance!" 
Piped a maiden of the dance-hall as she spurned another 

Then she grabbed her shawl and gained the door, and lifted 

up the latch; 

"Oh, Mister, I forgot something; do you happen to have a 


"It is the law of England!" This we heard on every hand, 

And before the night was finished we could plainly under- 

Then to tune of scampering footsteps and of bread-cry on 
the lip, 

We breathed a prayer for England's weal, and went back 
to the ship. 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

(Written to Harry C. Black at Brest, France, Sept. 11, 1918) 

It gives me exceeding great pleasure 
To acknowledge receipt of your verse, 
And to say in my trimetric measure 
I've seen poems a thousand times worse. 
In fact, if the truth you are seeking, 
Lend ear and I'll tell it to you: 
My book with your poems is reeking, 
And your name is atop of them, tool 

Please pardon me, sir, for presuming 
To purloin your Kiplingesque stuff, 
But we scribes have a way of assuming 
And of poems I've not near enough. 
Besides, you are better than Folger 
McKinsey, or Scollard or Kirk, 
Or Harman, or Loveman; they hold you 
Enthralled and unable to work! 

You say you are sick of the sea, sir, 
And would gladly go back to the States, 
But it seems very much like to me, sir, 
You had better fill all of your dates; 
For what could be more to your notion 
Than life on a sea-going tramp? 
She hasn't that hobby-horse motion, 
And your deck is no wetter than damp. 

The coal that you carry is helping 
To make us all safe from the Hun, 
And now that the Dachshund is yelping, 
The march to Berlin is begun. 
Of course you will sink like a pebble 
Should a submarine get in a rap; 
Remember your Dad was a Rebel, — 
Get out of your bunk with a snap! 

The price that we charge unknown scholars 

For printing their poems is this: 

Each agate line, couple of dollars 

In francs that they never will miss; 

Or better, sign up in a hurry 

For a hundred books right off the press; 

Come across with the bones and don't worry,— 

Your verse is past censure, we guess I 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

(Written in a stifling, smoke-filled compartment) 

The kings are dead, long live the King! 

The audience will rise and sing! 

Let no one breathe remonstrance vile, 

King Cigarette will reign a while! 

We loved the other rum old kings 
For their drollery and senseless things; 
Their romance charmed until we met 
The crusading knight, King Cigarette I 

O King of Kings, thy power is great 
In private life and affairs of state! 
So needed by the human race, — 
Like meat and drink and resting-place! 

Thou givest comfort to the weak 
And goad the strong in weather bleak; 
Fair woman falls before their charms, — 
Thy praise is sung by the babe in arms! 

Time was when thou wert crowning joke, — 
When Walter Raleigh first did smoke; 
But lo! thou'rt flaunted everywhere, — 
To windward, leeward, through the air! 

'Tis meet that men commune with thee 
In parlor on land, in bunk at sea; 
Man hath no use for lungs or throat 
Since the rank and file struck up thy note! 

So reign in state, O monarch grand, 
And soothe thy subjects through the land, 
And should one mortal raise protest, 
Throw him in to die among the rest! 

It matters not that time sounds knell, 
And many who smoke will smoke in hell; 
What the most folks want is the one best bet: 
Reign on and on, King Cigarette! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


In Paris, while "Big Bertha's" voice 
Broke shrill upon the hustling throng, 
I paid a visit to a shop, 
But did not tarry very long. 

"Donnez-moi des cartes postale, Ma'mselle!' 
Said I to the girl who kept the place; 
"Yes, yes, Monsieur; one moment, please," 
And a radiant smile lit up her face. 

"Vous parlez 1* Anglais tres bien!" 
I ventured as she turned her head; 
Her secret was not secret long, — 
"I am English, kind sir I" she said. 

(After Oliver Herford) 

An ancient French cat 

In the moonlight sat 

On a high board fence 

A-wonderiii' where he was at 

Following a memorable spat. 

A fine cat, that, 

Brave hero of many a feline bat, 

An aristocrat too sleek and fat 

To soil his chops on an ornery rat. 

It had been tit-for-tat 

On the front-door mat 

With a common yellow cat 

From the Barnegat; 

And the cat of which we mainly speak 

Did scratch and bite and vainly squeak, 

But the stranger cat 

Made him take the mat, 

Put a sty on his eye, 

Made him cry, 

Made him sigh, 

Mussed up his handsome coat 

And generally got his goat, 

And sent him to perch himself 

On the back-yard fence up high, — 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

A-wonderin' where he was at, 

And craving a dish of catnip, 

But having no particular appetite 

For canary birds. 

Then this gentleman cat 

Heard on the still night air, 

"Scat, you brat!" 

From the hired man, 

Who objected to his cries 

As adding to insomnia. 

So a noise began 

That really was a brick-bat 

Whizzing to the place 

Where the naughty cat 

Was at. 

The missile clipped his tail 

And he released a wail, 

And he went away from there 

With his remaining hair. 

Now, gentle reader, don't you feel real sad 
About this cat, though he acted bad? 
I'd hate to have been so weak and wan and hoary 
And found myself in that awful cat-egory! 


In January Ralph D. Paine 

Did board our ship to try the game 

Of canning submarines at sea, 

So's to write The Post of our bravery. 

This learned man and author bold 

(Yclept "Umslopogaas" of old) 

Once pulled an oar in the tub at Yale, — 

So harken to our wondrous tale: 

Grim Father Neptune has his throne 

In the Bay of Biscuits, all alone, 

And on the days of which we speak 

He served out weather rough and bleak; 

He sent us hail and he sent us rain, 

And 'twas not long ere Ralph D. Paine 

Did hie himself to the skipper's bunk 

And swear the writing game was punk. 

The submarines were driven back 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

To leeward shores to take a tack, 

And that is why — 'tis sad to tell — 

We did not bag the subs so well. 

Some said they didn't mind the subs, — 

Would welcome one to swag us dubs — 

But no such luck, and all sat tight, 

While Author Paine kept out of sight. 

Our First Lord of the Galley stood 

This sort of thing 's long's he could, 

Then shambling to the cabin door 

Into Ralph's ear these words did pour: 

"Musher Paine, sense youse de Post Reporter, 

Hit pears to me dis ship do owe to 

You de best what's in de logs, — 

We have for dinner, sir, hot dogs.** 

Our hero now was far too weak 

To navigate or even speak, 

So he seized a pad and on it wrote, 

"This hobby-horse has got my goat; 

King George told me to put an egg 

Into my shoe and shake a leg 

To the South where 'Pen-March Pete* hangs out, 

But believe me, cook, I'm up the spout!" 

Third morning, sun peeked from the sky; 

"Paine's Fireworks" then the crew let fly, 

A brace of cans kicked off the stern, 

To show we had the cans to burn; 

And likewise for to honor him 

We shot the guns with all our vim; 

Then off shoved Ralph to keep a date 

With the Blank Navy, — 'twas on his slate. 

(Base censor scratched the verse above 

Because he swore it wouldn't do 

To make a statement in cold type 

That were not absolutely true; 

He claims 'twere quite beyond the pale 

Of regulations for to shoot 

Our guns to honor any gent 

All braidless, and sea-sick to boot! 

And so we take our pen in hand, 

Although the shin and waves do fuss, 

To make you fully understand 

The reason why he crosses us. 

We beg your kind indulgency 

The while we finish out our yarn — 


Wtth the Sea Going Poets 

The balance of the thing is true, 

So gentle reader, please read on) : 

Alas! just sixty days apres 

Did "Pen-March Pete" get in our way, 

And tried to stop three cans at once: 

He limped to Spain — (not such a dunce!), 

We weep because our friend did go 

To another hobby-horse and so 

We pray that Mr. Ralph D. Paine 

Will write us up, and call again! 


Petty, petty, petty things, 

Pettifogging clan; 
Petty, petty, petty wings 
For the sailor man! 

Oh, it's petty this and petty that, 
And petty all the day, 
And make them wear a petty hat, 
And petty up their pay! 

The wardroom bunch is petty too; 
It's petty down below; 
'Most everything is pettified, 
No matter where you go! 

And then we have the pettiest 
Of petty punishment; 
(We like to think this pettiness 
At least is kindly meant!) 

Petty dudes with petty power 
Will put you on report; 

"Out on deck, you petty Dub, 

Come on and be a sport!" 

Damn this petty outfit all, 
So full of small-town stuff; 
One cruise of pettifogging gives 
A landsman gob enough! 

Petty, petty, petty gang, — 
But civilian, what's the use? 
Just let 'em gloat o'er pettiness 
And stew in their own juice! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

By a Deck Hand 

THIS is a literary ship, we'll put you hip right off the bat 
so you'll know where you're at in talking to our gobs. 
Go elsewhere for your snobs. You see, it's this a-way: Out 
there on deck, we'll say, is a lad in dungarees who acts like 
he might have lived in trees in the days when monkeys be- 
gan to walk around on hind legs upon the frozen ground. 
So lithely he swings to stanchions and things you'd think he 
had aeroplane goggles and wings; but haul him to deck by 
the nape of the neck and he'll give you the maritime dope 
by the peck. This gob has just finished some work in the 
states that causes much wonder when told to his mates; how 
he pulled down diplomas at this school and that — you 
would wonder his head would fit into his hat. (Ah-hal we 
are geting the swing of this stuff, for the further you go it is 
easy enough, and maybe we'd thrill you a fortnight or so, if 
to chow in the "diner" we had not to go!). Now some would 
apply to this bo'sun the name of "chocolate sailor" who 
don't know the game; but take it from me, Jack, he is not 
from the woods, and in spite of that handicap he's got the 
goods. The "meal-ticket sailor" in peace times was clever, 
but give me this new lad in all kinds of weather, for back in 
our country his girl waits for him to sink all the subs and to 
work with a vim. 

After passports you get from the QMOD., just peek in the 
wardroom and see what you see: An ossifer quiet and steady 
and wise, from the tip of his toe to the white of his eyes, 
who finished at Harvard with highest high mark since 
John Harvard's forbears emerged from the ark; then he went 
into business and there did so well he could tell J. P. Morgan 
to step down to hell! Hard to port you will notice a Dart- 
mouth man, too, and to starboard a Penn. hero digs into 
stew, while LaFayette colors are tacked to the mast, right 
under the skipper's, and slightly avast. Dame Rumor says 
Heidleberg has a smart son hauling ammunish out of the 
hold to the gun — a football star whose "flying wedge" will 
set the Kaiser's teeth on edge, helping to make democracy 
safe for the world with victory. Wisconsin sends a lad to 
bear her loyal banner in the air, and when he's shaken off 
red tape, an ensign's place he'll surely make. Forsooth are 
Princeton and Georgia here; you can tell them all by their 
thirst for beer I 


With the Sea-Going Poets 

Nearly all our crew can write poems and plays, though 
some have different manners and ways; the galley, for in- 
stance, we thank for a cook whose biscuits were bad but 
whose verse filled a book; partly ours as you notice by read- 
ing enough — his bread was atrocious, his poems the stuff. 
Same way with the Black Gang, they pen poems too, in 
morning and evening for me and for you. Around the good 
ship we have numerous men who know all the how and the 
why and the when of things that count for the most in life; 
I don't mean sweetheart, friend or wife — you see my mean- 
ing as plain as day, — for the small-town stuff is far away. 

A Yale guy helps us run the ship; from deck to deck he 
puts 'em hip; and yes, I mean to say some more (our skipper 
moves to slam the door!): There's worlds of good old 
regular knowledge you don't get out of any college. I'd 
just as soon as not have been to the School for Boobs for 
what I ken. Today the ossifers from there have got the 
sailor men just where they want 'em, but believe me, Jack, 
when in civilian life we're back (granting all the peaceful 
nations junk their wartime, hellish stuff as punk), won't it 
be nice to deal out jobs to deserving ossifers and gobs? 

My daddy's elevator plant is shut down now and simply 
can't do what it did a year ago: it had its ups and downs and 
so I guess there's lots of work to do to start the thing and 
see it through; and when it gets to goin' good, in a swivel 
chair I'll knock on wood and call our skipper from the line 
and tell him if he wants to jine an outfit forging to the top, 
to man a lift, relieve the Wop. Hash marks for every year 
aboard, his seven francs a month to hoard, and buy a uni- 
form quite neat with buttons brass and double seat; after 
a while, his record best, he shines his shoes and stands a 
test for second class and badge of brown, which makes him 
looked up to in town. I recommend this lifting game for 
bright young men to make a name; the conductor keeps all 
change and wraps and can lift himself by his own boot- 

All this apres la guerre, by heck! Right now I'll go and 
paint the deck! 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 


The printer says we needs must write 

Another page of verse tonight, 

The very tail-end form to fill; 

He swears we must, and so we will I 

Ye gods! what subject shall we take 
And stimulant to stay awake) 
Already for this printer-czar 
We've writ six yards on old Jack Tar! 

Quite naturally we hesitate 
To pen these lines and sit up late, 
For fear the folks that buy our stuff 
Will quickly yell they've got enough! 

And yet the book is one page shy, — 
The printer will not let it by! 
So here we go as best we may, 
And hope to sleep by crack of day! 

Full many subjects there remain, 
And some give joy and some give pain! 
The world gives latitude galore, — 
The human race gives even more! 

Of Reconstruction might we sing, 
And from subscribers echo bring; 
Of toothless League of Nations too, — 
Most anything that's bothering you! 

But, gentle reader, why give thought 
To weighty things that come to naught? 
While statesmen fight for good or worse, 
Your bards will save the uni-verse! 


The Gobs' Dictionary 

The Corruption The Meaning 

Aft Stern of Ship 

Agony box The phonograph 

Alchy Alcohol 

All hands The ship's company 

"Arise and shine!" Leave bunk 

Ash can A depth charge 

Big ticket Money for re-enlistment 

Big wagon A battleship or cruiser 

Black boats The destroyers 

Black gang Watertenders and firemen 

Blackie The vessel's blacksmith 

Boat cloth Cloth for officers to sit on 

Bolo man A warrant officer 

Bo'sun Chief Boatswain's mate 

Brig Place for culprits 

Broken down with sea-service Out of commission 

Bunker plate A European penny 

Captain of the Hold The storekeeper 

Captain of the Paint Locker The carpenter's mate 

Captain of the Phonograph Ship's music master 

Captain of the Wherry -A rowing coxswain 

Captain of the Wing Locker A self-nominated seaman 

Charley Noble Galley smokestack 

Chips A carpenter's mate 

Chocolate sailor A reserve 

Chow down! Meal is ready 

Cocoa matting Anti-slip deck cover 

"Come out of your hop!" "Quit dreaming!" 

Comical steward The caterer for crew's mess 

Convoy Troopship fleet; to escort ships 

Coppers A coppersmith 

Crow's nest Lookout station, foremast 

Davit Iron arm to lift boats 

Dago red Red wine 

Disrate To award lower rating 

Down for a shoot A courtmartial report 

Dungaree Navy Small craft navy 

Dusty Jack-of-the-Dust 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

The Corruption The Meaning 

Educated heave Fireman or watertender 

Lxex Executive officer 

Eyes of ship Acute angle of bow 

First luff First lieutenant 

Fish eyes Tapioca 

Flat foot A gob, not a marine 

Forecastle Fore part of ship; sleeping space 

Forward Bow of vessel 

Fu nnel r .Smoke-stack 

Galley , Kitchen 

Gasket A batter cake 

General quarters Battle stations for men 

Get underway Steam out to sea 

Gilgadget Small, slow steamer 

Gob A sailor 

Gravity tank Refuge for sea-sick 

Hard guy A bully 

"Hard left!" >; Column left with left rudder 

"Hard right!" Column right with right rudder 

Hash mark A service stripe 

Heave A fireman (coal passer) 

"Hell's bells!" Expression of exasperation 

How's to ?" Asking a favor 

Imitation officer A chief petty 

Jack-of-the-dust Commissary storekeeper 

Java Coffee 

Jjggy-Jig Junior grade lieutenant 

Jimmy legs Chief master-at-arms 

Jump ship Leave without authority 

Lame duck , Disabled ship or U-boat 

Lamp lighter Similar to printer's devil 

Land lubber A landsman 

"Lay down below!" Go below deck 

Laying eggs Planting German mines 

Leatherneck A marine 

Lend a hand Help somebody 

Liberty cabbage Sauerkraut 

Lie to Stop without anchoring 

List Fixed lean to side 


The Gobs' Dictionary 

The Corruption The Meaning 

Mai de mer Sea-sickness 

Meal-ticket sailor One looking for "three squares" 

Mess boy A colored wardroom flunkey 

Mess cook A waiter on table 

Moored „ .....Tied to ship or buoy 

Mud hook An anchor 

Naval Intelligence See Webster: "vacuum" 

Oil slick Ship or U-boat oil on water 

Old college mate A chum 

Old man Captain of ship 

O. N. S "Office of Naval Stupidity" 

"Out you go, Jack!" "Beat it!" 

Painter Line for small boats 

Patrol To scout; scouting ships 

Periscopitis Seeing many periscopes 

Pilot A navigator; to escort ships 

"Pipe down!" Keep quiet 

"Plenti zig-zag!" French for "rummed up" 

Port , r Left-hand side of ship 

"Put him hip!" Tell or inform him 

Radio Wireless operator 

Rat guards To keep rats off ship 

"Red lead" Catsup 

Red tape A string to wrap with; much ado about nothing 

Rendezvous Place to meet ships 

Salt Old-time sailor 

Savvy Understanding 

Sea dog An experienced sailor 

Sea-going Worthy of the sea 

Seconds Extra helpings at table 

"Secure!" Make guns fast 

Send-off What good officers get 

"Shake a leg!" or "Shake it up!" Get busy 

Shave-tail A warrant officer 

Shipmate A square fellow 

Ship over Re-enlist 

Ship water To leak 

Shoestrings Spaghetti 

"Shove off!" Go or get underway 

Skin of ship The hull 


70,000 Miles on a Submarine Destroyer 

The Corruption The Meaning 

Skipper .Captain of vessel 

Slumgullion Naviy hash 

Smith A blacksmith 

"Snap out of it!" Wake up 

Sparks Wireless operator 

Spuds Potatoes 

Stand in Steam into port 

Standing by Waiting to sail 

Stand out Go to sea 

Starboard Right-hand side of ship 

Submarine turkey Salmon 

Swag Money; to hit with torpedo 

"That's Jake!" "It pleases me!" 

The man Anybody in authority 

"Trays beans!" "Very good!" 

"Trim Ship!" Make even keel 

"Up all hammocks!!" Lash hammocks, arrange bunks 

Up for a crow To stand petty examination 

"Up on deck!" A challenge to fight 

Wake Water churned by propellers 

"Wash down!" Scrub deck 

Weather eye A sharp lookout 

Weigh anchor Pull up anchor 

Whale A torpedo 

"What do you say?" "How about it?" 

Win a home In France only 

Wing locker Place to get wings in an emergency 

Worms Macaroni 






a „ <£ 

6^ *y 


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Neutralizing agent: Magnesium Oxide 
Treatment Date: j^y 2001 



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il 79